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The challenges and opportunities of SocialMedia

  • Andreas M. KaplanCorresponding author contact informationE-mail the corresponding author
  • Michael Haenlein 
  • E-mail the corresponding author

  • Abstract

    The concept of SocialMedia is top of the agenda for many business executives today. Decision makers, as well as consultants, try to identify ways in which firms can make profitable use of applications such as Wikipedia, YouTube, Facebook, Second Life, and Twitter. Yet despite this interest, there seems to be very limited understanding of what the term “SocialMedia” exactly means; this article intends to provide some clarification. We begin by describing the concept of SocialMedia, and discuss how it differs from related concepts such as Web 2.0 and User Generated Content. Based on this definition, we then provide a classification of SocialMedia which groups applications currently subsumed under the generalized term into more specific categories by characteristic: collaborative projects, blogs, content communities, social networking sites, virtual game worlds, and virtual social worlds. Finally, we present 10 pieces of advice for companies which decide to utilize SocialMedia.

  • SocialMedia
  • User Generated Content; 
  • Web 2.0; 
  • Social networking sites; 
  • Virtual worlds

    • Teresa CorreaCorresponding author contact informationE-mail the corresponding author
    • Amber Willard Hinsley, 
    • Homero Gil de Zúñiga


    In the increasingly user-generated Web, users’ personality traits may be crucial factors leading them to engage in this participatory media. The literature suggests factors such as extraversion, emotional stability and openness to experience are related to uses of social applications on the Internet. Using a national sample of US adults, this study investigated the relationship between these three dimensions of the Big-Five model and socialmedia use (defined as use of social networking sites and instant messages). It also examined whether gender and age played a role in that dynamic. Results revealed that while extraversion and openness to experiences were positively related to socialmedia use, emotional stability was a negative predictor, controlling for socio-demographics and life satisfaction. These findings differed by gender and age. While extraverted men and women were both likely to be more frequent users of socialmedia tools, only the men with greater degrees of emotional instability were more regular users. The relationship between extraversion and socialmedia use was particularly important among the young adult cohort. Conversely, being open to new experiences emerged as an important personality predictor of socialmedia use for the more mature segment of the sample.

  • Internet; 
  • Socialmedia
  • Instant messages; 
  • Social networking sites; 
  • Big-Five; 
  • Personality
  • Eugene Agichtein


    The quality of user-generated content varies drastically from excellent to abuse and spam. As the availability of such content increases, the task of identifying high-quality content sites based on user contributions --social media sites -- becomes increasingly important. Social media in general exhibit a rich variety of information sources: in addition to the content itself, there is a wide array of non-content information available, such as links between items and explicit quality ratings from members of the community. In this paper we investigate methods for exploiting such community feedback to automatically identify high quality content. As a test case, we focus on Yahoo! Answers, a large community question/answering portal that is particularly rich in the amount and types of content and social interactions available in it. We introduce a general classification framework for combining the evidence from different sources of information, that can be tuned automatically for a given social media type and quality definition. In particular, for the community question/answering domain, we show that our system is able to separate high-quality items from the rest with an accuracy close to that of humans

  • Internet; 
  • Socialmedia
  • Instant messages; 
  • Social networking sites; 

  • Media and Group Cohesion: Relative Influences on Social Presence, Task Participation, and Group Consensus

    Youngjin Yoo and Maryam Alavi
    MIS Quarterly


    Organizations deploy advanced communication media such as audio and videoconferencing to enhance and extend group communication interactions. However, established groups (i.e., groups with a history of working together) can view and use the same technology differently from groups without any past experiences of working together. This study examines the relative influences of media condition and group cohesion on social presence, task participation, and group consensus. Results from a controlled laboratory experiment with 45 triads of college students working on a decision-making task showed that media condition (audio conferencing vs. desktop video-conferencing) has significantly smaller influences on social presence and task participation than group cohesion in established groups. The study found that influence of group cohesion over social presence is additive, rather than substitutive, to that of media condition. The study also established that task participation played a more important role than social presence in determining the degree of consensus among group members in computer-mediated communication environments.

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