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Applying CMC Theoreis to Assess Virtual Community
Unformatted Document Text:  CMC Theories and Virtual Community 5 induces members’ voluntary contribution of knowledge and information for the benefits of all community members (Nahaphiet & Goshal, 1998). It is reported that community members, when they have strong interpersonal ties, tend to increase the willingness to share information and resources, setting the stage for collaboration learning (Haythornthwaite, 2000). Strong communal ties also increase flow of information and resources among all members, contribution of help and support, commitment to group goals, cooperation among members, and satisfaction with group efforts (Chidambaram & Bostrom, 1997; McGrath, 1984; Wellman & Gulia, 1999). Others suggest that trust in the community fosters contribution and support in times of need (Haines, Hurlbert & Beggs, 1996; Wellman, 1999). The review of community studies manifests that a community exists in a social dynamic of interaction, influence, and exchange among community members. Therefore, online community should be assessed based on the observation of these social activities among members; whether there are any social activities, and, if there are, how different/similar they are to those in a real-life community. Theories and research on Computer-Mediated Communication The “cue-filtered-out” approach Early CMC research focused on the characteristics of computer/electronic media and assumed that this certain nature of computer media would affect the participants’ performance and interaction. This is often referred as “cue-filtered-out” (Culnan & Markus, 1987) approach which states that electronic media have a low social presence, and therefore, to deprive people of salient social cues. There are two well-known theories regarding medium’s ability to convey information that is being exchanged; social presence theory and media richness theory.

Authors: Chung, Siyoung.
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CMC Theories and Virtual Community
5
induces members’ voluntary contribution of knowledge and information for the benefits
of all community members (Nahaphiet & Goshal, 1998).
It is reported that community members, when they have strong interpersonal ties,
tend to increase the willingness to share information and resources, setting the stage for
collaboration learning (Haythornthwaite, 2000). Strong communal ties also increase
flow of information and resources among all members, contribution of help and support,
commitment to group goals, cooperation among members, and satisfaction with group
efforts (Chidambaram & Bostrom, 1997; McGrath, 1984; Wellman & Gulia, 1999).
Others suggest that trust in the community fosters contribution and support in times of
need (Haines, Hurlbert & Beggs, 1996; Wellman, 1999).
The review of community studies manifests that a community exists in a social
dynamic of interaction, influence, and exchange among community members. Therefore,
online community should be assessed based on the observation of these social activities
among members; whether there are any social activities, and, if there are, how
different/similar they are to those in a real-life community.
Theories and research on Computer-Mediated Communication
The “cue-filtered-out” approach
Early CMC research focused on the characteristics of computer/electronic media
and assumed that this certain nature of computer media would affect the participants’
performance and interaction. This is often referred as “cue-filtered-out” (Culnan &
Markus, 1987) approach which states that electronic media have a low social presence,
and therefore, to deprive people of salient social cues. There are two well-known
theories regarding medium’s ability to convey information that is being exchanged;
social presence theory and media richness theory.


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