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Information Needs in Online Social Networks

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This article examines the relationship between perceived benefits and participation in an online travel community, of representative social networking sites on the Internet, to understand what actually makes actors participate in social networks. Findings reveal that three factors (information acquisition, social-psychological, and hedonic) are main benefits influencing participation and attitude towards an online travel community. In addition, the multiple regression analysis indicates that information acquisition benefits are perceived as the most important influential elements. Some of the results are found not to be consistent with the findings of previous research. This study provides tourism-related organizations with useful information on how to utilize online communities for their marketing strategy.
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Keywords: INFORMATION NEEDS; ONLINE COMMUNITY; SOCIAL NETWORKS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-12-01

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  • Information Technology & Tourism is the first scientific journal dealing with the exciting relationship between information technology and tourism. Information and communication systems embedded in a global net have profound influence on the tourism and travel industry. Reservation systems, distributed multimedia systems, highly mobile working places, electronic markets, and the dominant position of tourism applications in the Internet are noticeable results of this development. And the tourism industry poses several challenges to the IT field and its methodologies.
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