New communications technologies include mobile phones that now provide access to the Internet and text messaging. The present study used the conceptual framework set forth by past uses and gratifications research and shifted focus to the media needs of one specific population: the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Past literature focused on the uses and gratifications of traditional media, but less is known about the consumption of new media by deaf people. Using a convenience sample of hearing and deaf students at RIT, findings from an e-mailed survey instrument showed deaf and hard-of-hearing students were more likely to use instant messaging and e-mail, whereas the voice function was used more by hearing students. Text messaging use was comparable between the two groups.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Mobile communication systems--Social aspects; Cellular telephones--Social aspects; Text messages (Telephone systems)--Social aspects; Instant messaging--Social aspects; Deaf--Means of communication
Department, Program, or Center
Department of Communication (CLA)
Ecker, Katelyn D., "Mobile phones as a social medium for the deaf: a uses and gratifications study" (2008). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus