Health communication on the web: The roles of web use motivation and information completeness

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Recent articles on the evaluation of the quality of health information on the World Wide Web reveal an emphasis on the completeness of information. This paper takes a situational approach to Web usage arguing that the impact of completeness on attitude and intention toward the issue is moderated by Web use motivation. Borrowing the analogy between low-high involvement and surfing-searching, it was hypothesized that the effect of completeness would be observed in the searching situation and not observed in the surfing situation. After the initial pretests and pilot studies, 246 respondents were recruited to participate in a 2×3 study design. Not supporting the hypotheses, it was observed that the effect of completeness was significant in both surfing and searching situations. Explanations are provided for the observation, and directions for future research are suggested.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2003

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