Social networking (SNW) services such as Facebook and MySpace are growing exponentially. While many people are spending an increasing amount of their time on the services, others use them minimally or discontinue use after a short period of time. This research is asking the question: What are the salient factors influencing individuals to continue using and extending the range of SNW services after their initial acceptance? This research recognizes that long-term viability and the eventual success of these services depends on continued usage rather than initial acceptance, and usage continuance of SNW services at the individual level is fundamental to the survival of many social technology-empowered businesses and organizations. We look to the Expectation-Confirmation Model of information systems (IS) continuance and a series of social theories as the underlying theoretical foundations. We develop the Usage Continuance Model of SNW Services to investigate continued usage behavior and enduring impacts of SNW services. The model proposes that usage continuance behavior of SNW services is a joint function of individuals’ perceptions of (1) intrinsic flow experience of SNW services, expected instrumentality of SNW services in managing and improving informational and relational values, and social influence as the outgrowth of social capital, and (2) costs in informational risks and participative efforts of time and social exchanges. The joint function is moderated by individuals’ use history of SNW features. The proposed model and hypotheses offer a comprehensive framework for empirically extending the IS continuance research to the ever pervasive SNW context.
Hu, Tao and Kettinger, William J., "Why People Continue to Use Social Networking Services: Developing a Comprehensive Model" (2008). ICIS 2008 Proceedings. 89.