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Sarita Yardi, PhD: Boundaries in Social Media Use



Social media has become central to social interactions in developed countries. The amount of time spent on Facebook, Twitter, and texting is astounding; yet, we understand little about how to manage social media use and its effects on our attitudes, relationships, and wellbeing. This talk will focus on boundary setting in social media use.  First, I will describe the design and deployment of ParentNet, an online social network for parents to support parents in managing youths’ social media use. Second, I will present a web-based experiment on Twitter that allows us to predict who people do or don’t want to follow online and why. At the heart of this research is a focus on how people manage social media use and its impact on technology attitudes and adoption. I will conclude with future directions focused on technology refusal, socioeconomic status, and implications for system design.


Sarita Yardi is a Ph.D. candidate in Social Computing from the College of Computing at Georgia Tech. Ms. Yardi’s dissertation research examines parenting challenges in teens’ social media use. She has designed and deployed an online social network to support hundreds of middle school parents in learning about changes in social media.

Ms. Yardi received her BA in Computer Engineering from the School of Engineering at Dartmouth College and her MS in Information Management and Systems from the School of Information at UC Berkeley. Ms. Yardi has interned with HP Lab’s Social Computing group and Microsoft Research New England Social Media Group. Her research has been supported by the NSF and MacArthur Foundation and she is a recipient of a Google Anita Borg Fellowship.