Link: Effects of Online Reputation Mechanisms on Perceived Credibility and Health Decision Making

1. Presented by: Drew Morgan Link

2. Title: Effects of Online Reputation Mechanisms on Perceived Credibility and Health Decision Making

3. Proposal meeting

4. Committee Chair: Dr. Leo Gugerty

5. Committee members: James McCubbin & Richard Pak

6. Reputation mechanisms and credibility are methods of adding additional information to forum posts, and are becoming more commonplace in online health forums. These systems provide users of forums additional information which can be used to evaluate the trustworthiness of the information being disseminated in community-run websites. The goal of the following studies is twofold. First, it is necessary to identify which elements of reputation systems and credibility participants use to make assessments of the trustworthiness, perceived credibility, and perceived accuracy of answers to health-related questions on a simulated web forum. Once the reputation mechanisms and credibility systems have been identified, the second study will explore how high and low overall reputation affects decisions in a non-compensatory decision-making task. This study is expected to demonstrate the preference for a non-dominating alternative when it is associated with high reputation, and an overwhelming preference for a dominating alternative when associated with a high reputation. It is also expected that participants will feel express higher levels of perceived credibility, trust, confidence, and accuracy of answers when making a decision based on reputation than when making decisions that are based on lower reputations.

7. Tuesday, May 15th at 1:00pm in Brackett 419

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