Journal of Family and Economic Issues

, Volume 36, Issue 4, pp 621–632 | Cite as

The Association Between Time Spent Using Entertainment Media and Marital Quality in a Contemporary Dyadic National Sample

  • Jeffrey Dew
  • Sarah Tulane
Original Paper


This study used the Actor Partner Interdependence Model and a national sample of married couples (N = 1368) to explore the relationship between entertainment media use and marital satisfaction, conflict, and perceived marital instability. Entertainment media-use included newer types of media (e.g., social networking websites) as well as traditional media (e.g., television). A number of negative relationships between media use and wives’ and husbands’ marital quality emerged. Husbands’ use of social networking websites, in particular, was associated with many of the marital quality variables. The effect sizes of media use were small, however. We also explored whether the relationship worked in reverse and whether media use differences between the spouses would relate to marital quality. When spouses reported different levels of using video games, they also reported lower levels of marital quality. The findings suggest that as media technology continues to change, it may relate to marital quality in new ways.


Marriage Media Time use Technology Television Social networking websites Video games 



The authors would like to acknowledge a grant from the Science of Generosity Initiative at the University of Notre Dame that enabled us to collect the data used in this study. All statements in this study are the authors’.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Family, Consumer, and Human DevelopmentUtah State UniversityLoganUSA
  2. 2.Family, Consumer, and Human DevelopmentUtah State UniversityLoganUSA

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