Paper Type

ERF

Abstract

Reciprocity and recognition play vital roles in facilitating user engagement in virtual communities, but seldom research examines the interplay between two. This study thus explores how recognition can interact with reciprocity to jointly influence knowledge contribution. Drawing from equity theory, we propose two hypotheses, with one to test the reciprocity effect and another to investigate the interaction effect between reciprocity and recognition in the Q&A community. We collected data from Stack Overflow and performed fixed-effect panel data analyses to test our hypotheses. Our preliminary results indicate that the receipt of answers from others in the past can increase current knowledge contribution, but the observed reciprocity effect can be dampened by the receipt of community recognitions. This study can contribute to extant literature by not only confirming the existence of reciprocity and its temporal effect, but also unveiling the unintended impact that recognition may have on reciprocity in the virtual communities.

Paper Number

1037

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COinS
 
Aug 16th, 12:00 AM

Help me help you? Exploring Unintended Consequence of Recognition on Reciprocity in Q&A Community

Reciprocity and recognition play vital roles in facilitating user engagement in virtual communities, but seldom research examines the interplay between two. This study thus explores how recognition can interact with reciprocity to jointly influence knowledge contribution. Drawing from equity theory, we propose two hypotheses, with one to test the reciprocity effect and another to investigate the interaction effect between reciprocity and recognition in the Q&A community. We collected data from Stack Overflow and performed fixed-effect panel data analyses to test our hypotheses. Our preliminary results indicate that the receipt of answers from others in the past can increase current knowledge contribution, but the observed reciprocity effect can be dampened by the receipt of community recognitions. This study can contribute to extant literature by not only confirming the existence of reciprocity and its temporal effect, but also unveiling the unintended impact that recognition may have on reciprocity in the virtual communities.

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