In-group Rationalizations of Risk and Indoor Tanning


This project is a content analysis of indoor tanning message board postings. Conventional wisdom among indoor tanning researchers is that people who use indoor tanning beds consider cancer as a distal outcome, and are more concerned with their immediate appearance than any long-term cancer risks. We conducted a content analysis of message board postings about cancer to see how indoor tanners actually talk about cancer risk., finding that people hold varied perceptions of risk, including: acknowledging the risk of indoor tanning be use; denying or downplaying the risk, often by citing perceived health benefits associated with tanning; blaming outside forces for cancer, such as lotion or genetics; and fatalistic beliefs, like "everything causes cancer," why should I worry about tanning?​