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Tob Regul Sci. 2018 Jan;4(1):644-655. doi: 10.18001/TRS.4.1.10. Epub 2018 Jan 1.

Real Time Assessment of Young Adults' Attitudes toward Tobacco Messages.

Author information

1
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center, University of Oklahoma Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK.
2
Senior Research Fellow, Population Research Center, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX.
3
Associate Professor, Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center, University of Oklahoma Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK.
4
Associate Professor, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston-UTHealth, School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences, Austin, TX.
5
Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences, Austin, TX.
6
Professor, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston- UTHealth, School of Public Health, Department of Health Promotion and Behavioral Sciences, Austin, TX.

Abstract

Objectives:

We used ecological momentary assessment (EMA) to examine young adults' attitudes towards pro-tobacco messages encountered in real time and their association with intentions to use tobacco.

Methods:

Young adults (N = 92, ages 18-29) recorded sightings of marketing or social media related to tobacco in real time via mobile app for 28 days. Participants reported message characteristics, their attitudes towards the message, and intentions to use the depicted product for each submission. We used generalized linear mixed models to examine factors related to attitude towards message and intentions to use tobacco.

Results:

Messages depicting e-cigarettes (p < .001) or hookah (p < .05) were associated with significantly more favorable attitudes compared with traditional cigarettes. Positive attitude towards the message was significantly associated with intention to use the depicted product (p < .001). Messages depicting e-cigarettes and hookah were significantly associated with higher intention to use. Message source was not significantly related to attitudes towards the message or product use intentions.

Conclusions:

Marketing featuring e-cigarettes and hookah is an important target for future regulation. Given that pro-tobacco and e-cigarette messages are prevalent online, future research should consider the Internet and social media as important venues for counter-marketing and intervention efforts.

KEYWORDS:

ecological momentary assessment; social media; tobacco advertising; young adults

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