Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

State of the Art


An overview of the literature on Internet
social networking (ISN) is presented.
The authors identify four dominant
streams of research and review
the key contributions to the field. The
review reveals that the research field
is fragmented and does not yet facilitate
a general understanding of the
phenomenon. In particular research is
very much skewed towards certain user
groups (e.g., students) and platforms
(in particular Facebook). Further, implications
for a corporate context are
discussed. In doing so, three contexts
of application are differentiated: Social
network sites (SNSs) for 1) recruiting
and professional career development,
2) relationship facilitation in distributed
work contexts, and 3) interactions with
end customers. The authors discuss
SNS potentials, implications of existing
ISN research and future research opportunities.
In summary, they seek to
contribute to a better understanding
of the phenomenon of ISN and to making
available the current state of ISN research
for the wider Enterprise 2.0 community.