Date of Graduation
Master of Arts in Journalism (MA)
Second Committee Member
special needs, social media interaction, Uses and Gratifications Theory, Facebook usage impact, socialization, visually impaired, blind
This present research seeks to provide a more comprehensive understanding of why people with visual impairment use social media. I investigate this question using uses and gratification (U&G) Theory, which was developed by Katz, Blumler, & Gurevitch (1974). The theory explains what people do with media and why. The purpose of this study is twofold: it seeks to document reasons people with visual impairment use Facebook and it endeavors to reveal which variables can influence users’ decisions to use one social media platform instead of another. In particular, I am interested in determining factors motivating users with visual impairment to use certain platforms and the gratifications that they receive. Accordingly, this study attempts to investigate the impact of social media on the daily lives of blind and visually impaired people and to examine the extent to which social media has allowed them to enrich their daily lives by building and participating in online communities.
The targeted population is represented by a sample of one hundred sixty-eight Facebook users, all of whom are active members of Facebook groups. Data were gathered through an online survey that consisted of three main parts: (1) the reasons that visually impaired people use social media; (2) their perceptions of social networking sites; and (3) the impact of social media on blind and visually impaired users. The data gathered through the survey were analyzed using Excel.
Outini, I. (2020). The Impact of Social Media on the Social Lives of People with Visual Impairment (Facebook Groups as a Case Study). Theses and Dissertations Retrieved from https://scholarworks.uark.edu/etd/3552