Human Flesh Search: What Did We Find?

Information & Management, 56(4), 476-492. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.im.2018.09.009

The University of Auckland Business School Research Paper Series

Posted: 18 Oct 2021

See all articles by Cheng-Suang Heng

Cheng-Suang Heng

National University of Singapore (NUS)

Zhijie Lin

Tsinghua University - School of Economics and Management

Xiaoying Xu

South China University of Technology - School of Business Administration (SBA)

Ying Zhang

University of Auckland Business School

Yixuan Zhao

Nanjing University

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2019

Abstract

Human Flesh Search (HFS) has profusely proliferated in recent years. We adopted the multiple-case, replication design approach, to investigate 21 HFS cases spanning from 2007 to 2014, comprising 204,008 posts from 67,375 posters. Our preliminary analyses depicted consistent patterns across categories of legal, moral, and entertainment. We established three contagious mechanisms driving HFS behavior (i.e., fueled emotionalism, blind acceptance, and collective amnesia) and two non-contagious mechanisms (i.e., isolated dissension and sluggish update). We also shed insights on the technology affordances and constraints. Critical theoretical contributions and important practical implications for HFS initiators, facilitators, and designers of forums are discussed.

Keywords: Human Flesh Search, Online community, Contagious and non-contagious mechanism, IT affordances and constraints

Suggested Citation

Heng, Cheng-Suang and Lin, Zhijie and Xu, Xiaoying and Zhang, Ying and Zhao, Yixuan, Human Flesh Search: What Did We Find? (2019). Information & Management, 56(4), 476-492. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.im.2018.09.009 , The University of Auckland Business School Research Paper Series, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3942167

Cheng-Suang Heng (Contact Author)

National University of Singapore (NUS) ( email )

15 Computing Drive
Singapore, Singapore 117418
Singapore

Zhijie Lin

Tsinghua University - School of Economics and Management ( email )

Haidian District
Beijing, Beijing 100084
China

Xiaoying Xu

South China University of Technology - School of Business Administration (SBA) ( email )

Wushan
Guangzhou
China

Ying Zhang

University of Auckland Business School ( email )

12 Grafton Rd
Private Bag 92019
Auckland, 1010
New Zealand

HOME PAGE: https://unidirectory.auckland.ac.nz/people/profile/zhang-ying

Yixuan Zhao

Nanjing University ( email )

22 Hankou Road
Nanjing, Jiangsu 210093 210093
China

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