The role of nationalism in shaping consumers’ data privacy concerns and reactions to these concerns

Date
2022-12
Advisor
Ger, Güliz
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Bilkent University
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English
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Thesis
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Abstract

This thesis examines the role of nationalism in shaping consumers’ data privacy concerns and reactions to these concerns. Data privacy concern is a growing issue; yet we do not know much about the role of nationalism in consumers’ data privacy concerns. In this thesis, I focus on the case of WhatsApp’s new data privacy policy crisis in 2021 in Turkey. In this crisis, consumers discussed data privacy concerns about the local and global brands through their nationalist ideology. I used netnography to collect data from various data sources. In the discourse of nationalism, the findings show that consumers associate various respective local and foreign actors to build trust in local and distrust in global brands by emphasizing the relationship between brands and other actors such as governments, institutions, and politicians. Also, consumers construct data privacy concerns at the collective national level and legitimize the government’s involvement in data collection and processing. Moreover, consumers have concerns about global brands’ discriminatory data privacy policies and then show consumer resistance to these brands. Consumers also have data privacy concerns due to the domination of global brands in the market and encourage others to use the local app to battle against the dominant global brands. Overall, this study shows that consumers’ data privacy concerns and reactions to these concerns are not only shaped by the relationship between consumers and brands at the individual level but also shaped by social, cultural, and political factors within a particular context at the macro level.

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Consumer nationalism, Consumer resistance, Data privacy concerns, Data nationalism, Data colonialism
Citation
Published Version (Please cite this version)