The diverse spread of artificial intelligence (AI) agents provides evidence of the most notable changes in the current media landscape. AI agents mostly function based on voluntary and involuntary sharing of users' personal information. Accordingly, users' privacy concerns have become key to understanding the varied psychological responses towards AI agents. In this study, we adopt the "computers are social actors" paradigm to identify the association between a set of relational variables-intimacy, para-social interactions, and social presence-and privacy concerns and to determine whether a user's motivations moderate this relationship. The results from an online survey (N = 562) revealed that this occurs primarily to gratify three AI agent user needs: entertainment motivation, instrumental motivation, and passing time. The results also confirmed that social presence and intimacy significantly influence users' privacy concerns. These results support the moderating effect of both entertainment and instrumental motivation on the relationship between intimacy, para-social interaction, social presence, and privacy concerns about using AI agents. Further implications for privacy concerns in the context of AI-mediated communications are discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The recruitment of interview respondents1 was supported by a marketing agency. Interviewees users (male and female) aged from 17 to 50 years with experience using AI agents.
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- intelligent agent
- para-social interaction
- privacy concerns
- social presence