Digital Identity: The Effect of Trust and Reputation Information on User Judgement in the Sharing Economy

50 Pages Posted: 10 Mar 2018

See all articles by Mircea Zloteanu

Mircea Zloteanu

UCL

Nigel Harvey

University College London - Centre for Economic Learning and Social Evolution (ELSE)

David Tuckett

University College London - Centre for the Study of Decision-Making Uncertainty

Giacomo Livan

University College London - Financial Computing and Analytics Group, Department of Computer Science; London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE), Systemic Risk Centre, Students

Date Written: March 8, 2018

Abstract

The Sharing Economy (SE) is a growing ecosystem focusing on peer-to-peer enterprise. In the SE the information available to assist individuals (users) in making decisions focuses predominantly on community generated trust and reputation information. However, how such information impacts user judgement is still being understood. To explore such effects, we constructed an artificial SE accommodation platform where we varied the elements related to hosts’ digital identity, measuring users’ perceptions and decisions to interact. Across three studies, we find that trust and reputation information increases not only the users’ perceived trustworthiness, credibility, and sociability of hosts, but also the propensity to rent a private room in their home. This effect is seen when providing users both with complete profiles and profiles with partial user-selected information. Closer investigations reveal that three elements relating to the host’s digital identity are sufficient to produce such positive perceptions and increased rental decisions, regardless of which three elements are presented. Our findings have relevant implications for human judgment and privacy in the SE, and question its current culture of ever increasing information-sharing.

Keywords: Sharing Economy, Trust, Reputation, Judgement, User Behavior

Suggested Citation

Zloteanu, Mircea and Harvey, Nigel and Tuckett, David and Livan, Giacomo, Digital Identity: The Effect of Trust and Reputation Information on User Judgement in the Sharing Economy (March 8, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3136514 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3136514

Mircea Zloteanu

UCL ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom
+44 (0)20 3108 7199 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://mz555.github.io/

Nigel Harvey

University College London - Centre for Economic Learning and Social Evolution (ELSE) ( email )

Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

David Tuckett

University College London - Centre for the Study of Decision-Making Uncertainty ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1 6BT
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/psychoanalysis/unit-staff/david.htm

Giacomo Livan (Contact Author)

University College London - Financial Computing and Analytics Group, Department of Computer Science ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE), Systemic Risk Centre, Students ( email )

Houghton St
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

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