The effects of user comments on hedonic and eudaimonic entertainment experiences when watching online videos

A. Marthe Möller
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  • Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR), University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
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and Rinaldo Kühne
  • Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR), University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
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Videos presented on social media platforms are frequently watched because people find them entertaining. However, videos on social media platforms are often presented together with user comments containing information about how entertaining previous viewers found them to be. This social information may affect people’s entertainment experiences. The goal of the present study was to explore how user comments affect viewers’ hedonic and eudaimonic entertainment experiences in response to online videos. The results of an online experiment (N = 203) showed that user comments in which previous viewers of a video indicate that they enjoyed or appreciated the video increase the hedonic entertainment experiences of new viewers. Viewers’ eudaimonic entertainment experiences were unaffected by user comments. These findings show that entertainment experiences do not emerge in response to online videos alone. Instead, they also depend on information about the entertainment experiences of previous viewers.

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The European Journal of Communication Research is an established forum for scholarship and academic debate in the field of communication science and research from a European perspective. Communications highlights the concerns of communication science through the publication of articles, research reports, review essays and book reviews on theoretical and methodological developments considered from a European perspective.