Exploring How Individuals Manage Their Image When Interacting with Professional Contacts Online

  • Aparna GonibeedEmail author
  • M. N. Ravishankar
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9844)


Social media is ubiquitous and most professionals feel compelled to use it for both personal and professional purposes. Although interacting with workplace colleagues and managers across online-offline and work-life offers several advantages, it also poses several image related challenges. This study aims to assess how individuals manage their image when interacting with professional contacts online. The article does this by studying individuals’ experiences of interacting online and their responses to cope with emerging conflicts. For this purpose, 31 interviews were conducted among Indian IT professionals. The findings suggest that respondents exercised audience segregation and content segregation to convey a desired professional image. By focusing on the impact of interactions with professional contacts online, the study suggests that individuals enact a ‘Restricted Self’ online. In doing so, the article contributes to the literature on online impression management.


Impression management Social media Cognitive demands 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Liverpool Hope UniversityLiverpoolUK
  2. 2.Loughborough UniversityLoughboroughUK

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