Author: Wang, Wei-heng Sophie
Title: Serious leisure participants of media fan pilgrimage : a case of the Korean wave in Taiwan
Degree: DHTM
Year: 2013
Subject: Fans (Persons) -- Taiwan
Popular culture -- Korea (South)
Tourism -- Korea (South)
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: School of Hotel and Tourism Management
Pages: x, 217 p. ; 30 cm.
Language: English
Abstract: The study explores the phenomenon of media fandom in the context of Korean Wave using the serious leisure framework. Included is an investigation of the relationships between levels of fanaticism, perceived leisure constraints, and serious leisure as they affect media fans' pilgrimage decision-making processes. It aims to establish and quantify the critical link between fandom and tourism, a largely unexplored concept in the literature to date. A conceptual framework was developed to model the relationships among the major constructs. The proposed model suggests that media fans' pilgrimage intentions are determined by levels of fanaticism, perceived leisure constraints, and seriousness of leisure pursuit. The project was constructed around four objectives. The first was to examine the application of the serious leisure framework in analysing the pursuit of media fandom. Based on the results of literature reviews and in-depth interviews, most media fans do demonstrate the six characteristics of serious leisure participants which distinguish them clearly from casual leisure participants. The second objective was to further develop and refine the measurement for major constructs. It was achieved by conducting exploratory factor analysis (EFA) to explore and purify the dimensionality of each concept and using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) to validate the measurement model. The third objective was to examine the proposed model and test the hypothesized relationships among the constructs by using structural equation modelling (SEM). The last objective was to evaluate the implications of the research on media fandom on tourism marketing. Both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies were employed in the current study. First, a literature review was done and in-depth interviews were conducted to collect primary data on levels of fanaticism. Second, a pilot test was undertaken to assess the reliability of all the major constructs. At the last stage, a total of 676 questionnaires were collected. The structural model was tested using the statistics software package, AMOS.
The findings of this study supported five of the seven hypotheses specified in the proposed model. All four research objectives are achieved. The results showed that levels of fanaticism are positively related to serious leisure and intentions for media fan pilgrimage participation while perceived leisure constraints are negatively related to intentions for media fan pilgrimage participation. In addition to directly affecting pilgrimage intentions, serious leisure mediates the relationships between levels of fanaticism and intentions for media fan pilgrimage participation. This study proposes an integrated conceptual framework to understand media fans' pilgrimage decision-making process. Several theoretical implications can be drawn from this study. First, the study contributes to the literature by developing a four-dimensional measurement scale for levels of fanaticism in the context of media fandom. As the concept of fanaticism in media fandom has not been fully researched, the development of fanaticism scale is a welcome addition to the literature and can serve as a basis for future research into fans' behaviours. Second, the study fills the research gap by applying Stebbins' (1982, 2001) six qualities of serious leisure to the complex experience of media fandom. Another academic contribution relates to the application of the newly developed SLIM scale. The study confirms that the SLIM scale is a useful measurement in evaluating the degree of seriousness in a given leisure activity. Thirdly, the study identifies the determinant of serious leisure in the context of media fandom. Fourth, the study enriches the leisure study literature by revealing the mediating effect of serious leisure. Finally, the study also contributes to the existing literature by purifying and developing measurement scales of perceived leisure constraints and serious leisure attributes. The study contributes to the tourism industry by revealing the potential of the media fan pilgrimage market and the difference between devoted media fans and general tourists. By providing a clearer picture of this niche market, the study helps destination marketers to better understand their customer base. On a more specific basis, this research could serve to reinforce marketing strategies and to systematize media fans' pilgrimage intentions. Apart from the discussion of the theoretical and practical implications of the work, an examination of the limitations of the study as well as possible future research streams are also addressed.
Rights: All rights reserved
Access: restricted access

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