Job Satisfaction and Social Media Use: Cognitive Reflection and Journalists’ Utilization in Egypt and the United States

Rasha El-Ibiary, Brian Calfano


Studies demonstrate that “social media use” is positively correlated with “employees’ job performance” and positive mediating effect. Using a comparative approach between journalists’ job satisfaction in Egypt and the United States, this article analyzes social media use through different variables including the political system, media freedom, level of journalistic training and professionalism, media regulations, and media ownership patterns. As opposed to the notion of media freedom and professionalism applied in the United States and elsewhere, the tight media environment in Egypt, especially digital media, has pushed journalists to depend more on social media. Building on the literature on social media use in journalistic workflow, we (1) apply social exchange theory assumptions of relative job satisfaction as a motivator to engage social media in journalism practice, (2) use a questions-as-treatment survey embedded experiment to isolate and prime consideration aspects of one’s job to test for a direct priming effect on reported social media use, and (3) compare social media use across comparative media systems (i.e., Egypt and the United States).


social media use, media freedom, professionalism, media regulations, media ownership, job satisfaction, social exchange theory, Egypt, United States

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