author={Patricia Maloney},
  journal={Information, Communication \& Society},
  pages={105 - 124}
  • Patricia Maloney
  • Published 1 February 2013
  • Business
  • Information, Communication & Society
There has been a great deal of social theory written about how groups form and affect members in the offline world, but less research about how online groups can affect the behaviors and identity of the individuals who choose to participate in them. Pro-anorexia, or pro-ana, websites have been shown to have an effect on those individuals who participate in and/or view them by previous research, but previous research is inconsistent or lacking concerning the reason(s) for that effect. This study… 
“I Am a Waste of Breath, of Space, of Time”
Through discourse analysis, the Metaphor Identification Procedure was applied to 757 text profiles and identified four key metaphorical constructions in pro-ana members’ self-descriptions: self as space, self as weight, perfecting the self, and the social self.
Emotions, Everyday Life, and the Social Web: Age, Gender, and Social Web Engagement Effects on Online Emotional Expression
Emotional expression is key to the maintenance and development of interpersonal relationships (IR) online. This study develops and applies a novel analytical framework for the study of emotional
Heart, Mind and Body: #NoMorePage3 and the Replenishment of Emotional Energy
Emotional energy is key to disruptive institutional work, but we still know little about what it is, and importantly, how it is refuelled. This empirical paper presents an in-depth case study of ‘No
Estimating Determinants of Attrition in Online Eating Disorder Community : An Instrumental Variables Approach
Eating disordered users have relatively short periods of activity on Twitter, and findings on users’ tweeting interests show that users who attempt to recover from eating disorders are more likely to drop out than those who promote eating disorders as a lifestyle choice.
Social interactions in online eating disorder communities: A network perspective
A large communication network of individuals affected by eating disorders on Twitter is analyzed and it is found that individuals tend to mainly interact with others within the same community, with limited interactions across communities and inter-community interactions characterized by more negative emotions than intra- community interactions.
Estimating Determinants of Attrition in Eating Disorder Communities on Twitter: An Instrumental Variables Approach
Estimation results suggest that users’ emotions and network centralities have causal effects on their dropout behaviors on Twitter, suggesting that presence in online communities is strongly determined by the individual’s emotions and social networks.
Does ana=Anorexia? Online Interaction and the Construction of New Discursive Objects
In 2001, glossy lifestyle magazine Cosmopolitan unveiled ‘the world’s most dangerous secret society’.1 This wasn’t the paramilitary wing of a terrorist organisation, or a Nazi paedophile network, but
Factors Influencing Social Media Users’ Continued Intent to Donate
Social media donation is an emerging sustainable business model. Donation in the context of social media can often bring benefits to content creators and social media platforms, as well as realizing
Encounters on the Social Web
Based on ethnographic fieldwork, this study examines focused encounters on the social web. It starts from the premise that online interaction can be analyzed through the conceptual lens of a


The Presentation of “Pro-Anorexia” in Online Group Interactions
Analysis indicates that pro-anorexic identities are normalized and strengthened through the normalization of participants' pro-ana thoughts and behaviors, and the group bond created through sharing a secret identity.
Inside the “Pro-ana” Community: A Covert Online Participant Observation
A covert participant observation was conducted into the meanings of interaction in the “pro-ana” online community, suggesting that the sites are best understood as local cliques offering temporary relief from offline hostility, but it is doubtful whether they can be said to possess any therapeutic value beyond the immediate online context.
A grounded theory approach to the phenomenon of pro-anorexia
This research looked at the thoughts and feelings expressed by visitors to pro-anorexic websites to find out how they felt about anorexia and why they used pro-anorexic sites. Using grounded theory
What does viewing a pro-anorexia website do? An experimental examination of website exposure and moderating effects.
Results provide an empirical basis for concern (expressed by clinicians, researchers, the media) that pro-anorexia websites are a troubling new form of thin-ideal exposure that warrants further examination.
Pro-eating disorder websites: users' opinions.
  • E. CsipkeOuti Horne
  • Psychology
    European eating disorders review : the journal of the Eating Disorders Association
  • 2007
Visitors who interacted with others on the 'pro-eating disorder' websites and sought emotional support reported improved mental state after visiting, and for them, evidence was found of reduced impact from potentially damaging content.
Investigating the impact of pro‐anorexia websites: a pilot study
Objective This pilot study examined the affective and cognitive consequences of exposure to a pro-anorexia website. Method Young women (N=24) were randomly assigned to view one of three websites
An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of Participation in a Pro-anorexia Internet Site and Its Relationship with Disordered Eating
Findings suggest participation in a pro-anorexia Internet site was multi-purpose, providing a coping function in relation to weight loss, and the contribution of sites to increased levels of eating disorders is not inevitable.
The Ana Sanctuary: Women’s Pro-Anorexia Narratives in Cyberspace
In this paper I explore cyberspace as a space where women who are struggling with anorexia can potentially find sanctuary from the surveillance and regulatory mechanisms of control in the public
Comparing psychological and sociological approaches to identity: identity status, identity capital, and the individualization process.
A link between the psychologically oriented identity status paradigm, and the sociologically oriented individualization theory is explored, finding that the identity statuses representing identity confusion and identity synthesis appear to represent forms of default and developmental individualization.
Identity, youth, and crisis
Identity, Erikson writes, is an unfathomable as it is all-pervasive. It deals with a process that is located both in the core of the individual and in the core of the communal culture. As the culture