Do peer and parental norms influence media content-induced cyber aggression?

Anna Bullo, Peter J. Schulz

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8 Scopus citations


Evidence from previous research indicates that media exposure can contribute to the development of aggressive behaviors, even in online contexts. However, media effects are known to depend on various dispositional, developmental, and contextual factors. The present study investigates in a longitudinal perspective whether social norms deriving from both parents and peers can reinforce or mitigate the impact of exposure to media content on cyber aggression. A multilevel model for change is applied to data resulting from four waves (six-months intervals) of a Swiss longitudinal survey involving 101 randomly selected middle school classes (N = 1459, Mage at T1 = 11.53, SD = 0.41). Results show that a more frequent exposure to antisocial media content is significantly associated with higher rates of individual cyber aggression and that peer behavior (collective descriptive norm) significantly moderates this relation. No significant interaction effects with media exposure were found for perceived injunctive norms of peers and parents.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107136
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
StatePublished - Apr 2022

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  • Cyber aggression
  • Early adolescence
  • Longitudinal
  • Media exposure
  • Parental norms
  • Peer norms


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