Peer-to-peer user support in electronic support groups

Berg, W.J. van den (2006) Peer-to-peer user support in electronic support groups.

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Abstract:When trying to solve a problem that occurred while using a product, a user can choose between several media. A recent addition to these media is the Electronic Support Group (ESG). Though popular and in some aspects very different from the other media at the user's disposal, this medium has not had much academic attention. Therefore, in this paper the information seeking process of users trying to solve a problem using an ESG was studied. An existing (though slightly adapted) Information Seeking Process model turned out to be suitable for the examination of this process. Content analysis was used for this study, which offered some strong advantages but also failed to answer some questions. Significant results of this study are the large amount of problems involving more then one product, the great demand for producer-independent information and the limited amount of data with which the user can evaluate the obtained information. To study the issues unanswered by the content analysis, an larger-scale enquiry among ESG users and the use of the Critical Incident Technique is recommended.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/57336
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