Background. Personal exposure is a crucial aspect of digital socialization. It pertains to the amount of time spent on social networks, the number of active accounts, interactions on different platforms, the content published on social networks, the purpose for which the content is shared, the degree of personal exposure, and the changes in social life caused by the exposure. Gender plays an important role in predicting online behavior, but previous studies have yielded contradictory results.
Objective. To characterize personal exposure to social media in young Cubans (networks used, hours of exposure, published content, how much of one's private life is exposed, alterations due to its use). To define the differences in personal exposure based on the gender variable.
Design. A survey specifically created for this research was used. The sample was composed of 3345 young Cuban residents between 18 and 35 years old.
Results. The young people spent a considerable amount of time per day on WhatsApp, Instagram*, and Facebook/Messenger*. Users shared content related to humor, music/art, and their personal lives. These interactions served as a source of entertainment, a means of communication and socialization, and a platform for expressing opinions on various topics. Personal content was shared frequently. The young people reported experiencing disturbances such as family demands, decreased attention span, difficulty sleeping, and decreased social interactions. There were gender differences in the level of personal exposure, with females reporting higher levels of exposure.
Conclusion.There are high levels of personal exposure among Cuban youth. Different qualities are manifested according to gender. Females reflect the highest levels of personal exposure.
Keywords: digital socialization/ personal exposure/ youth/ social media/ disorders