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HOW INTERPERSONAL TRUST MANIFESTS ONLINE BEHAVIOR: A case study exploring the impact of societal levels of interpersonal trust on the utilization of online source credible information.
Unformatted Document Text:  How interpersonal trust manifests 15 trust. Of the nations in the sample, Canada scores the highest in interpersonal trust, followed by Germany and France. Since Ebay has the same rules, regulation and terminology (in respective local languages i.e. French in France, German in Germany and English in Canada) with the same icons, graphics and layout for all its auction websites, it ensures a high level of standardization to the study. To study the effect of varying seller ratings, completed auctions for IBM laptops were selected in one-week of January 2002. Though eBay offers both the English (ascending) and Dutch auction, this study is limited to single issue (unit), ascending price (English) auctions. Based on past research, the data collection reflected the following controls. Firstly, since brand names often provide cues and are used as quality signals by consumers when faced with uncertainty about product attributes (Erdem and Swait, 1998), the sample of auctioned product chosen from within each national website are for the same brand of products i.e. ‘used IBM laptops’. Given the relative similarities in economic development and consumption expenditure towards communication and related services, it is assumed that the relative utility and quality perceptions for IBM laptops are the same across the sample countries. Another assumption is that most bidders for computers have expertise with the Internet, or have some level of technological competence, so as to minimize variances in user expertise. Secondly, price tends to be used as a quality signal by consumers under uncertainty (Rao and Monroe, 1989). Within eBay, sellers initial price often signals hidden value information, and tends to also have a gating impact on the number of bidders attracted to the

Authors: Vishwanath, Arun.
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How interpersonal trust manifests 15
trust. Of the nations in the sample, Canada scores the highest in interpersonal
trust, followed by Germany and France. Since Ebay has the same rules,
regulation and terminology (in respective local languages i.e. French in France,
German in Germany and English in Canada) with the same icons, graphics and
layout for all its auction websites, it ensures a high level of standardization to the
study.
To study the effect of varying seller ratings, completed auctions for IBM
laptops were selected in one-week of January 2002. Though eBay offers both the
English (ascending) and Dutch auction, this study is limited to single issue (unit),
ascending price (English) auctions. Based on past research, the data collection
reflected the following controls. Firstly, since brand names often provide cues and
are used as quality signals by consumers when faced with uncertainty about
product attributes (Erdem and Swait, 1998), the sample of auctioned product
chosen from within each national website are for the same brand of products i.e.
‘used IBM laptops’. Given the relative similarities in economic development and
consumption expenditure towards communication and related services, it is
assumed that the relative utility and quality perceptions for IBM laptops are the
same across the sample countries. Another assumption is that most bidders for
computers have expertise with the Internet, or have some level of technological
competence, so as to minimize variances in user expertise. Secondly, price tends
to be used as a quality signal by consumers under uncertainty (Rao and Monroe,
1989). Within eBay, sellers initial price often signals hidden value information,
and tends to also have a gating impact on the number of bidders attracted to the


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