What Influences Adolescents’ Rumor Acceptance and Support for Participation in Sociopolitical Issues? Analyzing the Role of Patterns and Levels of Communication
This study examines the impact of adolescents’ communication behaviors on their acceptance of rumors as well as their perceptions and support for participation regarding a sociopolitical issue. Applying the heuristic-systematic model, we suggest that adolescents’ communication patterns and overall level of communication reflect two different information-processing modes. Survey results (N = 558) in the context of the 2008 mad cow disease scare in South Korea show that five communication patterns differently influence adolescents’ acceptance of rumors, perceived severity, and support for sociopolitical participation. Further, the overall level of communication influences rumor acceptance on adolescents’ support for sociopolitical participation.