Network Characteristics and the Value of Collaborative User-Generated Content

Marketing Science, Forthcoming

35 Pages Posted: 6 Sep 2011  

Sam Ransbotham

Boston College - Carroll School of Management

Gerald C. Kane

Boston College

Nicholas H. Lurie

University of Connecticut School of Business

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: August 1, 2011

Abstract

User-generated content is increasingly created through the collaborative efforts of multiple individuals. In this article, we argue that the value of collaborative user-generated content is a function both of the direct efforts of its contributors and its embeddedness in the content-contributor network that creates it. An analysis of Wikipedia's Medicine Wikiproject reveals a curvilinear relationship between the number of distinct contributors to user-generated content and viewership. A two-mode social network analysis demonstrates that the embeddedness of the content in the content-contributor network is positively related to viewership. Specifically, locally central content - characterized by greater intensity of work by contributors to multiple content sources - is associated with increased viewership. Globally central content - characterized by shorter paths to the other collaborative content in the overall network - also generates greater viewership. However, within these overall effects, there is considerable heterogeneity in how network characteristics relate to viewership. In addition, network effects are stronger for newer collaborative user-generated content. These findings have implications for fostering collaborative user-generated content.

Keywords: user-generated content, information value, Wiki, social network analysis

JEL Classification: M3

Suggested Citation

Ransbotham, Sam and Kane, Gerald C. and Lurie, Nicholas H., Network Characteristics and the Value of Collaborative User-Generated Content (August 1, 2011). Marketing Science, Forthcoming . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1922894

Sam Ransbotham (Contact Author)

Boston College - Carroll School of Management ( email )

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.SamRansbotham.com

Gerald C. Kane

Boston College ( email )

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.profkane.com

Nicholas H. Lurie

University of Connecticut School of Business ( email )

Storrs, CT CT - Connecticut 06269
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.business.uconn.edu/person/nicholas-lurie/

Paper statistics

Downloads
150
Rank
158,920
Abstract Views
718