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Title: Mind your e-manners: Impact of cyber incivility on justice, emotions and individual responses
Keywords: Cyber Incivility, Emotions, Anger, Frustration, Individual Responses, Gender Dissimilarity between Perpetrators and Targets
Issue Date: 6-Dec-2006
Citation: CHIN JEN YUIN (2006-12-06). Mind your e-manners: Impact of cyber incivility on justice, emotions and individual responses. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Since their inception, email systems have been widely used at the workplace. While email has been viewed as a means of increasing organizational coordination and responsiveness, the use of electronic communication does have a dark side to it. The lack of contextual and social cues in emails may allow users to be less constrained in their communication. As well, the impersonal nature of emails may lead users to violate the courtesies required in social interactions, thus giving rise to cyber incivility. This research examined cyber uncivil behaviors at the workplace using a two-study approach. In Study 1, we generated a pool of items so as to facilitate the development of a measure to assess cyber incivility. As well, Study 1 explored the possibility that different negative emotions may have differential predictive efficacies. We did this by examining the impact of anger and frustration on individual responses to cyber incivility. The responses examined included forgiveness, avoidance, direct revenge and indirect revenge. Results from Study 1 provided strong support for our theorizing that different negative emotions may affect the way individuals respond towards their perpetrator in the aftermath of a cyber transgression. Study 2 was then conducted as a follow-up study. Drawing from the research streams on workplace incivility, interactional justice, emotions and relational demography, Study 2 developed and tested a full structural model that examined the processes through which individuals respond to cyber incivility. Specifically, our research model first hypothesized that active and passive cyber incivility will trigger perceptions of interactional injustice. In particular, we predicted that active cyber incivility will be more strongly associated with interactional injustice than passive cyber incivility. In turn, perceived interactional injustice was posited to trigger negative emotions i.e., anger and frustration. Subsequently, it was hypothesized that anger and frustration will elicit different types of individual responses. Last, we examined the impact of gender dissimilarity between perpetrators and targets as a moderator between negative emotions and individual responses. Data were collected via questionnaire surveys in both studies. Study 1 respondents consisted of undergraduate students from a large state university, while Study 2 respondents comprised business executives and professionals in several organizations from a number of different industries. Hierarchical regression analyses were used to analyze the hypotheses put forth in Study 1. In Study 2, structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to assess the fit of our research model. Taken together, results of this research provided compelling evidence for utilizing the affective events framework as a theoretical perspective in explaining why and how individuals may respond towards the cyber incivility perpetrator in different ways. Implications of these findings were also discussed.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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