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Currently accepted at: JMIR Mental Health

Date Submitted: Jan 21, 2018
Open Peer Review Period: Jan 22, 2018 - May 29, 2018
Date Accepted: May 29, 2018
(closed for review but you can still tweet)

This paper has been accepted and is currently in production.

It will appear shortly on 10.2196/mental.9903

The final accepted version (not copyedited yet) is in this tab.

The final, peer-reviewed published version of this preprint can be found here:

Perceived Attitudes About Substance Use in Anonymous Social Media Posts Near College Campuses: Observational Study

Hammond AS, Paul MJ, Hobelmann J, Koratana AR, Dredze M, Chisolm MS

Perceived Attitudes About Substance Use in Anonymous Social Media Posts Near College Campuses: Observational Study

JMIR Ment Health 2018;5(3):e52

DOI: 10.2196/mental.9903

PMID: 30072359

PMCID: 6096169

Perceived Attitudes About Substance Use in Anonymous Social Media Posts Near College Campuses: Observational Study

  • Alexis S Hammond; 
  • Michael J Paul; 
  • Joseph Hobelmann; 
  • Animesh R Koratana; 
  • Mark Dredze; 
  • Margaret S Chisolm

ABSTRACT

Background:

Substance use is a major issue for adolescents and young adults, particularly college students. With the importance of peer influence and the ubiquitous use of social media among these age groups, it is important to assess what is discussed on various social media sites regarding substance use. One particular mobile app (Yik Yak) allowed users to post any message anonymously to nearby persons, often in areas with close proximity to major colleges and universities.

Objective:

This study describes the content, including attitude toward substances, of social media discussions that occurred near college campuses and involved substances.

Methods:

A total of 493 posts about drugs and alcohol on Yik Yak were reviewed and coded for their content, as well as the poster’s attitude toward the substance(s) mentioned.

Results:

Alcohol (226/493, 45.8%), marijuana (206/493, 41.8%), and tobacco (67/493, 13%) were the most frequently mentioned substances. Posts about use (442/493) were generally positive toward the substance mentioned (262/442, 59.3%), unless the post was about abstinence from the substance. Additionally, posts that commented on the substance use of others tended to be less positive (18/92, 19.6% positive) compared to posts about one’s own use (132/202, 65.3% positive).

Conclusions:

This study provides a description of anonymous discussions on or near college campuses about drugs and alcohol, which serves as an example of data that can be examined from social media sites for further research and prevention campaigns.


 Citation

Please cite as:

Hammond AS, Paul MJ, Hobelmann J, Koratana AR, Dredze M, Chisolm MS

Perceived Attitudes About Substance Use in Anonymous Social Media Posts Near College Campuses: Observational Study

JMIR Mental Health. (forthcoming/in press)

DOI: 10.2196/mental.9903

URL: https://preprints.jmir.org/preprint/9903

PMID: 30072359

PMCID: 6096169

© The authors. All rights reserved. This is a privileged document currently under peer-review/community review (or an accepted/rejected manuscript). Authors have provided JMIR Publications with an exclusive license to publish this preprint on it's website for review and ahead-of-print citation purposes only. While the final peer-reviewed paper may be licensed under a cc-by license on publication, at this stage authors and publisher expressively prohibit redistribution of this draft paper other than for review purposes.