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mass communication
media effects
parasocial relationship

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This article generalizes the performed theoretical review of scientific research on the parasocial theory. The author separates key concepts of the parasocial theory such as parasocial interactions and parasocial relationships and gives a brief description of them. She describes phenomenon of parasocial processing, which is studied rarely. This phenomenon is generated while mass-media watching, but does not lead to the formation of neither parasocial interaction nor parasocial relationships; however media consumers demonstrate reactions to media persons or on their certain phrases or actions on the cognitive, emotional and behavioural levels. Basing on the theoretical analysis, by synthesizing and generalizing world scientific achievements, the author presents, within parasocial theory, ten media effects the most common among consumers. The presented media effects demonstrate various options of consequences (from emotional to behavioural) characteristic for the audience with formed parasocial relationships. The author divides media effects on the following groups: the illusory effects, appearing if young people, while watching, experience something that does not actually exist  (the effects of parasocial presence, paraidentification, virtual reversed parasocial projection); the effects of emotional bias, when people immerse emotionally into a relationship with a media figure and starts to think of them as of a real person (when they are not) and, consequently, because of emotions, media consumers stop to look at this media figure objectively or analyze their actions (the effects of paraempathy, parasocial belonging, influenced perception of a media figure); the effects of a changed personal ideology, when people influenced by parasocial relationship change their opinions or values (the effects of parasocial contact, self-concept modification); and behavioural effects when the existing parasocial relations change an individual’s behavioural patterns and add a new ones (the effects of fans’ paracreativity, consumer behaviour, self-concept modification). It is also important to note that each of the described effects cannot be considered as positive or negative as they all depend on personal life circumstances.
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