Module 8: Alcohol

Ch. 3: The Role of Social Media (Twitter)

In Module 6 we looked at theory about the impact of social context on substance use behavior. This current chapter draws from Module 6: it looks at the potential of Twitter chatter to have an impact on peer drinking, operating through social norms and social learning theory. The important parts of this piece for our purposes are the abstract, introduction, results, and discussion. The piece is Cavazos-Rehg, P.A., Krauss, M.J., Sowles, S.J., & Bierut, L.J. (2015). “Hey everyone, I’m drunk: An evaluation of drinking-related Twitter chatter. Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 76(4), 635-643.

In this chapter you will read about:

  • the place of online social networks in our understanding of the role social contexts play in substance use behavior
  • the “pro alcohol” bias in Tweets
  • alcohol marketing in the Twittersphere
  • implications for addressing/preventing alcohol misuse
  • key terms related to alcohol use, alcohol misuse, and alcohol use disorders.

PDF links icon

Click here for a link to our Carmen course where you can locate the assigned pdf file(s) for this chapter. You will need to be logged into our Carmen course, select Module 8, and proceed to the Coursework area. Under the Readings heading you will find a box with links to the readings for relevant coursebook chapters. Don’t forget to return here in your coursebook to complete the remaining chapters and interactive activities.


  1. What does it mean that “on-line social networks can influence the spread of drinking behaviors up to three degrees of separation (i.e., friends, and friends of friends) from page 635 of the article?
  2. How does the following statement relate to the theories studied in Module 6: “exposure to drinking-related content on social media is common and contributes to the normalization of drinking among young people” from page 635 of the article?
  3. What are the implications of the statement “the number of pro-drinking Tweets was more than 10 times the number of anti-drinking Tweets” from pages 640-641 of the article?



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