Consumer Behavior

Information Overload and Information Distrust: How Does Information Environment Influence Consumer Well-being During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Authors
  • Wenna Han orcid logo (North Carolina State University)
  • Hanna Lee (University of South Carolina)
  • Yingjiao Xu (North Carolina State University)
  • Yang (Alice) Cheng orcid logo (North Carolina State University)

Abstract

The information environment during the COVID-19 pandemic led to problematic information processing due to the excessive amount of information and inaccuracy issues. Based on Cognitive Appraisal Theory, this study aims to investigate how perceived information overload and information distrust influence consumers’ emotional states (i.e., fear, anxiety, and hope) by shaping their perceptions of the pandemic (i.e., perceived risk and uncertainty). Data were collected from 815 US consumers in November 2021 and analyzed using structural equation modeling. Findings indicated that information overload increased consumers’ perceived risk and uncertainty of COVID-19, which in turn, structured their emotions. Information distrust had a significant impact on risk perception, which led to increased fear. Additionally, consumers’ COVID-19 involvement, as well as their infection and vaccination experience, moderated the emotion formation process. This study lends managerial implications for effective communication strategies in global health emergencies.

Keywords: Consumer well-being, COVID-19, Cognitive Appraisal Theory, Information processing

How to Cite:

Han, W., Lee, H., Xu, Y. & Cheng, Y., (2024) “Information Overload and Information Distrust: How Does Information Environment Influence Consumer Well-being During the COVID-19 Pandemic”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 80(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.31274/itaa.17146

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Published on
20 Jan 2024
Peer Reviewed
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