The Dark Side of Information Technology Minitrack

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The “dark side of IT use” track welcomes theoretical and empirical papers examining alternative consequences of IT use and implementation in organizations and societies. The objective of this mini-track is to focus not only on the antecedents, development processes, consequence of numerous phenomena related to the dark side of IT use but also the potential strategies and techniques for behavioral interventions. We seek, based on this forum of discussion, to provide practitioners (e.g., IT developers, managers, psychologists, and policy makers) in a multitude of contexts with a deeper understanding of the potential consequences regarding the dark side of IT use. Further, we hope these studies help to shape guidelines for designing and implementing organizational and hedonic IT while minimizing the potential negative consequences of IT use.

Submitted papers might focus on, but are not limited to, some of the following themes related to the dark side of IT use. We acknowledge that over time new dark side of IT phenomena will emerge, and we hence call welcome topics that focus on IT-related phenomena which is harmful, that may extend this list.

  • IT-related addictions
  • Cyber loafing
  • Cyber bullying
  • Deceptive computer-mediated communication
  • Disrupted work life balance
  • IT interruptions
  • IT misuse
  • Technostress
  • Impulsive use of IT
  • Physiological effects of IT use

Submissions are welcome and encouraged from a variety of theoretical foundations (e.g., information systems, psychology, cognitive science, decision sciences, sociology, social networks, organizational behavior, neuroscience, computer science, and informatics) which might advance our knowledge of the antecedents, processes, interventions and consequences of the dark side of IT use. The track invites relevant and rigorous studies without restriction for the methodologies used, units of analyses and levels of theorization.

Minitrack Co-Chairs:

Ofir Turel (Primary Contact)
California State University, Fullerton

Amr Soror
California State University, Fullerton

Zach Steelman
Oklahoma State University, Tulsa


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 6
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    When Modern Technologies Meet Ageing Workforces: Older Workers are more affected by Demands from Mobile Interruptions than their Younger Counterparts
    ( 2017-01-04) Tams, Stefan ; Grover, Varun ; Thatcher, Jason ; Ahuja, Manju
    Mobile technologies have dramatically increased the number of work-related interruptions. In many organizations, employees have to remain accessible and respond to these technology-mediated (T-M) interruptions even after regular work hours. Thus, demands from work interruptions might spill over into workers’ evening and family time, entailing role stress. Ultimately, workers might shy away from using the technologies they deem responsible, with negative impacts for organizations. At the same time, the workforce is ageing rapidly, and older workers might be even more susceptible to the negative impacts of interruptions than their younger counterparts. Hence, this research examines whether demands from T-M interruptions reduce IT use indirectly via workers’ experiences of role stress and whether this indirect effect depends on age such that it is stronger for older workers. Data collected from 121 younger and 124 older knowledge workers supported this idea. Implications for research and practice are discussed.
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    Understanding Consumers' Reactance of Personalized Online Advertising Services: from a Perspective of Negative Effects
    ( 2017-01-04) Chen, Qi ; Feng, Yuqiang ; Liu, Luning ; Ju, Jingrui
    Despite the increasing popularity of IT-enabled personalization, the online consumers’ attitude of reactance appears to be a major inhibiting result in their acceptance of the online personalized advertising. The objective of this study is to study consumers’ reactance of online personalized advertising from the perspective of negative effects. Especially, we identify the rational choice factors rooted in the rational choice theory in the context of reactance and test their impacts on reactance, with consideration of individual feeling factors in a specific situation of personalization paradox. We also identify the contingent effects of consumers’ goals. By analyzing the survey data from 281 respondents, our results indicate that the curiosity and vulnerability significantly impact on the rational choice factors, and the influences of the rational choice factors on consumers’ reactance vary in the context of consumers’ different goals (searching and browsing). Theoretical and practical implications are also discussed.
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    Take Control of Interruptions in Your Life: Lessons from Routine Activity Theory of Criminology
    ( 2017-01-04) Kalgotra, Pankush ; Luse, Andy ; Sharda, Ramesh
    Steeped among the items on the dark side of information technology are personal technology interruptions. Past research has examined the negative impact of technology interruptions; however, the factors that are responsible for the increasing rate of interruptions are rarely discussed. In this study, by adapting the criminology theory of Routine Activity Theory (RAT), we propose three factors that lead to an interruption: number of interruption sources, absence of guardians, and individual targetness. Results from a survey of mobile users show that combinations of these factors have increased the interruption rate in our lives. Interestingly, just having more apps on the phones does not increase interruptions; it is a combination of the factors noted above.
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    Linking User Age and Stress in the Interruption Era: The Role of Computer Experience
    ( 2017-01-04) Tams, Stefan
    The workforce is rapidly growing older; especially the number of older workers (60 years and over) is increasing sharply. At the same time, the number of interruptions mediated by modern information technologies is growing rapidly. These interruptions include, for example, instant messages and email notifications. Recent research has shown that interruptions have harmful consequences for workers as they can lead to stress. Interruptions might be especially problematic for older workers, implying severe problems for this fast-growing group of users regarding their well-being and performance at work. This study proposes that older workers perceive more interruption-based technostress than their younger counterparts because of differences in computer experience between older and younger individuals. Thus, the study answers recent calls for exploring users’ age as a substantive variable in IS research, and it also contributes to the literature on technostress by demonstrating how technostress might affect certain groups of users more than others.
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    From IT Addiction to Discontinued Use: A Cognitive Dissonance Perspective
    ( 2017-01-04) Vaghefi, Isaac ; Qahri-Saremi, Hamed
    One of the main topics discussed within the realm of the dark side of IT is addiction. IT addiction has been found to bring adverse consequences on users’ lives. In order to overcome the difficulties associated with IT addiction, interrupting and quitting addiction has become an important research agenda. Recent research findings have shown that IT addicts do not always feel guilty about their usage, and in many cases, they do not even perceive their usage as problematic. In this study, we draw on cognitive dissonance theory to theorize and propose a model showing that the degree of users’ cognitive dissonance can make a difference in their willingness to quit their IT addiction. We tested the model using data collected from 226 social network sites users. The analysis provided empirical support for our model and shed light on the mediation and moderation effects of cognitive dissonance in this process.