Why People Don('t) Share Music on Social Media? An Exploratory Study of Music-sharing Behaviour and the Relation with Self-concept

Federica Rigon

Student thesis: Master thesis


The music industry has been totally disrupted by technological and digital advancements. These changes have happened at the same time as the increasing growth of the phenomenon of sharing on social media platforms. Social media have gradually recognized the subjectivity of user-generated content and acknowledged the relevance of music in self-presentation and self-expression online. Thus, they have introduced features and functions in order to creatively integrate music in online sharing. In addition, there is an urgency to recognize the value of social interactions in music-sharing, which Spotify has partially captured and included in its structure of online music platform. Therefore, the research explores the psychological drivers behind motivations for sharing music, especially self-expression and the quest for social interactions, in their interrelations with people’s perception of themselves. Further, the study investigates non-sharing behaviours, in order to research the reasons that hinder people from engaging in music-sharing, and the ways through which these motivations are related to parts of their self-concept. In order to in-depth understand and investigate these interrelations, the author has employed qualitative methods, specifically in-depth phenomenological interviews and social media content analysis, that were eventually juxtaposed in a comparative analysis. The data analysed during interviews were therefore partially integrated by findings on self-presentational motives and social interaction motives, derived from the analysis of Instagram and Spotify online profiles of active users. The analysis revealed that significant interrelations existed between music-sharing behaviours and individual self-concept, both in terms of the selfconcept being a shaper of behaviour and in terms of music-sharing activities providing opportunities for self-reflection and self-definition.

EducationsMSocSc in Management of Creative Business Processes , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2019
Number of pages97
SupervisorsAnna-Bertha Heeris Christensen