Every breath you take: comparing perceptions of cyberstalkers and physical stalkers

Prasad, Sanish (2018) Every breath you take: comparing perceptions of cyberstalkers and physical stalkers. MSc(Res) thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

The current literature has identified different factors that influence perceptions of stalking behaviour, such as participant gender and the relationship between the victim and the stalker. Much less is known about perceptions of cyberstalkers.

Researchers are unsure whether cyberstalking is inherently different to physical stalking. However, evidence exists suggesting they are the same.

This study aimed to inform this contentious point by examining the effect of the medium of stalking (cyber or physical) on stalking perception. Participants completed an online questionnaire and were assigned to a physical or cyberstalking condition; both of which contained a vignette of stranger stalker behaviour and ex-partner stalker behaviour. After which the behaviours were rated on a 7 point Likert-type scale on 4 different measures. Participants viewed stranger stalkers as more dangerous than ex-partner stalkers, a result consistent with previous literature. The medium of stalking, however, only had a minimal influence – cyber stranger stalkers were seen as more alarming than physical stalkers; however this difference was minimal. No difference on the three other measures was found. This suggests that people view cyberstalkers as the same as physical stalkers, supporting the idea that the two forms of stalking are not distinct. Implications for cyberstalker treatment are discussed, along with possible methods to reduce the chances of being a cyberstalking victim.

Gender had no influence on stalker perception – a result which was accounted for through methodology.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (MSc(Res))
Supervisors: Duff, Simon
Bullock, Lydia
Keywords: Physical stalking, Cyberstalking, Stalker perception, Gender effects
Subjects: W Medicine and related subjects (NLM Classification) > WM Psychiatry
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Medicine
Item ID: 55367
Depositing User: Prasad, Sanish
Date Deposited: 05 Apr 2019 10:47
Last Modified: 07 May 2020 14:00
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/55367

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