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Evaluation of reputation in the context of online social communities

Landwehr, J. (2020) Evaluation of reputation in the context of online social communities.

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Abstract:Uncertain credibility and reliability are a severe problem in the social online community space. They often cause member inactivity and or endangerment. A system that evaluates individuals’ reputation online and displays it on their profile can help solve this problem. In this study, we (1) investigate the concept of reputation in order to find a set of constructs, that organisations can use to develop different reputation systems and (2) introduce two reputation system categories. This study consists of three parts. Firstly, a Word Association was conducted (n= 61) to find words associated with reputation. Secondly, the words are used in a Pilot Card Sorting (n= 30) to elicit users’ mental models of reputation. The mental models give an overview of possible constructs and their underlying structure. The results suggest that there are at least two categories of reputation systems automated and peer to peer. Thirdly, a follow-up Card Sorting was conducted for both categories separately (both n = 31). The results are presented in a heatmap and a dendrogram based on a hierarchical cluster analysis. Combining the obtained clusters from both (heatmap and dendrogram) into a tentative cluster structure results in 6 constructs with subconstructs for each reputation system category. Activeness, Activity, Network, Engagement, Commonness, and Content for automated reputation and Credibility, Behaviour, Sociability, Irresponsible/Provoking, Reliable, Confidence and Positive Influence for peer to peer reputation. Based on these set of constructs we introduced two reputation systems one focussing on automated reputation and one focussing on peer to peer reputation. The obtained set of constructs can serve as a basis for developing systems that evaluate the reputation of members in online social communities.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:02 science and culture in general, 77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
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