Online Communities: A Longitudinal Analysis of Communication Activities
Online communities (OCs) are seen as important stimulus to electronic business. However, surprisingly little is known about how the communication activity of their users develops and changes over time. A longitudinal study bears the potential to better elaborate the enabling and inhibiting factors of the users? communication activity in OCs. To explore these phenomena, we aim to develop a conceptual framework that serves as a foundation to guide an explorative data analysis of real OCs. The notions of common ground, information overload, interactivity and social loafing will be used to explain the communication activity of the users in online communities. The empirically explored framework will help organizations to support the development of OCs and utilize them in an economically successful way.