Suzuki, T.（鈴木貴久）, Yamamoto, H.（山本仁志）, Ogawa, Y.（小川祐樹）& Umetani, R.（梅谷凌平） (2023). Effects of media on preventive behaviour during the COVID-19 pandemic. コロナ禍における予防行動に対するメディアの効果 Humanities and Social Science Communications 10, 58. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-023-01554-9
The novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic required implementation of a variety of measures. In addition to pharmaceutical measures, such as vaccines, changing individuals’ nonpharmaceutical preventive behaviour is essential to prevent the spread of infection. In uncertain situations, such as a pandemic, media sources are important for guiding individuals’ decision-making behaviour. In this study, we examined the effects of media use on preventive behaviour during COVID-19. Earlier studies have shown that social networking service (SNS) browsing promotes preventive behaviour. However, those studies only assessed a single point during the early stages of the pandemic; therefore, the effects on ongoing preventive behaviour are unclear. Thus, a two-wave panel survey was conducted in 2020 and 2021 for an exploratory analysis of changes in the effects of media on individuals’ preventive behaviour over time. The results show that the effect of SNS browsing on preventing going out was confirmed only during the early stage of the pandemic and was not observed 1 year later. It is also shown that those who shifted from self-restraint to going out within 1 year were not affected by the type of media use, but by cognitive factors. As the situation changes during a pandemic, analyses that consider time-series changes are essential for gaining insights about the effects of media on the promotion and maintenance of continuous prevention behaviours.