University of Twente Student Theses


Why Do We Watch? : A Mixed-Method Study on Live-Stream Consumption

Sluman, Daniël R. (2021) Why Do We Watch? : A Mixed-Method Study on Live-Stream Consumption.

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Abstract:Little is known about why live-stream consumers consume live-streams. Existing academic research suggests that live-stream consumption is based on a set of socio-motivators hailing from the Uses and Gratifications Theory. The present study combines a mixed-method model to first measure an adapted six-factor socio-motivational framework against four indicators of live-stream consumption through an online survey (N = 319). The results showed significant effects on what motivated live-stream consumption on multiple factors, namely the motivation to interact within a community, as well as seek new information and experiences, be entertained, experience external support and engage meet new people. The results of this statistical analysis were funneled into a topic list, which served as a guide for semi-structured interviews (N = 20). The combined results helped to explain concepts like consumers’ emotional connectedness to live-streams, community interactions and spending patterns within a live-stream environment. Compared to existing theories on media engagement and consumption, live-stream consumers appear to value the enriched interactions, like chat pop-ups, alerts and live-stream agency, available on live-stream platforms as opposed to more traditional platforms. Additionally, live-stream consumers are drawn to the nuanced social structure of live-stream communities, and make a conscious effort to find communities that satisfy their needs, which range from social interaction, to gathering and learning new information and skills, to experiencing a sense of belonging. Compared to the current research on live-stream consumption, these findings offer deepened insights in the “social” aspect of live-stream consumption, define “agency” within the scope of live-stream consumption, argue that entertainment as a factor does not fit very well into the scope of this research, and helps to build a theoretical foundation for future research through results and suggestions.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
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