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Equal Trust: An Experiment Exploring the Impact of Interactivity and Sources on Individuals' Perceptions of Credibility for Online News Stories
Unformatted Document Text:  15 For some of the statistical comparisons, it was necessary to determine if people actually used the interactive content available because, in the literature review, it was predicted that participation would affect their judgments about the story. Two questions were included in the questionnaire (in the moderate and high multimedia conditions) to assess whether individuals used the interactive elements or not. The first asked whether they used the picture gallery available (in the moderate and high interactivity conditions), while the second asked if they used the video player available (in the high interactivity condition only). Originally, we had planned on collapsing the answers to those two questions to create a third factor dividing those who did and did not use the interactive tools, but because use of the video player was too low, participants for this factor were simply segmented by whether they used the picture gallery or not. It should be noted that this third factor will be referred to as the "participation" factor for the remainder of the manuscript. Dependent Variables & Measures The dependent variables in the study were perceived source credibility and perceived message credibility. When asked about source judgments, participants were requested to give their opinions about the credibility of information provided by China regarding the Olympics. Thus, source credibility here dealt with sources within the story (Gans, 1979). When asked about message judgments, they were requested to give their opinions about the credibility of the story itself (Sundar & Nass, 2001).

Authors: Kiousis, Spiro.
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15
For some of the statistical comparisons, it was necessary to determine if people
actually used the interactive content available because, in the literature review, it was
predicted that participation would affect their judgments about the story. Two questions
were included in the questionnaire (in the moderate and high multimedia conditions) to
assess whether individuals used the interactive elements or not. The first asked whether
they used the picture gallery available (in the moderate and high interactivity conditions),
while the second asked if they used the video player available (in the high interactivity
condition only). Originally, we had planned on collapsing the answers to those two
questions to create a third factor dividing those who did and did not use the interactive
tools, but because use of the video player was too low, participants for this factor were
simply segmented by whether they used the picture gallery or not. It should be noted that
this third factor will be referred to as the "participation" factor for the remainder of the
manuscript.
Dependent Variables & Measures
The dependent variables in the study were perceived source credibility and perceived
message credibility. When asked about source judgments, participants were requested to
give their opinions about the credibility of information provided by China regarding the
Olympics. Thus, source credibility here dealt with sources within the story (Gans, 1979).
When asked about message judgments, they were requested to give their opinions about
the credibility of the story itself (Sundar & Nass, 2001).


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