Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://ktisis.cut.ac.cy/handle/10488/1232
Title: Investigating social network patterns within an empathic online community for older people
Authors: Pfeil, Ulrike 
Zaphiris, Panayiotis 
Keywords: Empathic online communities
Older people
Social network analysis
Social interactions
Ageing
Online discussion board
CMC
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Elsevier
Source: Computers in Human Behavior. Volume 25, Issue 5, September 2009, Pages 1139-1155
Abstract: In this paper, we study the social network structure of an online discussion board within SeniorNet, an empathic online community for older people. We apply Social Network Analysis (SNA) to analyse the communication patterns and relationships between members of the discussion board. In addition to looking at the structure of the exchanged messages within the discussion board as a whole, we also investigate associations between the communication content and the social network patterns. Our findings show distinct differences between the social network patterns of empathic and non-empathic communications. For example, members are more connected and closer to each other in the social networks that are based on empathic communication compared to non-empathic communication. Additionally our results show that the type of empathic communication (e.g. different kinds of support) is linked to the social network structure within the discussion board.
URI: http://ktisis.cut.ac.cy/handle/10488/1232
ISSN: 0747-5632
DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2009.05.001
Rights: © 2009 Elsevier Ltd
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