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Credibility Assessment of Online Information in Context
Soo Young Rieh
Publication Year
The purpose of this study is to examine to what extent the context in which people interact with online information affects people's credibility perceptions. In this study, credibility assessment is defined as perceptions of credibility relying on individuals' expertise and knowledge. Context has been characterized with respect to three aspects: Context as user goals and intentions, context as topicality of information, and context as information activities. The data were collected from two empirical studies. Study 1 was a diary study in which 333 residents in Michigan, U.S.A. submitted 2,471 diary entries to report their trust perceptions associated with ten different user goals and nine different intentions. Study 2 was a lab-based study in which 64 subjects participated in performing four search tasks in two different information activity conditions - information search or content creation. There are three major findings of this study: (1) Score-based trust perceptions provided limited views of people's credibility perceptions because respondents tended to score trust ratings consistently high across various user goals and intentions; (2) The topicality of information mattered more when study subjects assessed the credibility of user generated content (UGC) than with traditional media content (TMC); (3) Subjects of this study exerted more effort into making credibility judgments when they engaged in searching activities than in content creation. These findings indicate that credibility assessment can or should be seen as a process-oriented notion incorporating various information use contexts beyond simple rating-based evaluation. The theoretical contributions for information scientists and practical implications for web designers are also discussed.
Credibility assessment; Credibility assessment effort; User-generated content; Information search; Content creation
Journal Title
Journal of Information Science Theory and Practice
Citation Volume
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8. KISTI 간행물 > JISTaP > Vol. 2 - No. 3
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