The increasingly booming online social networks promote the development of online health forum. People tend to solve kinds of health issues through the Internet. However, it is still unclear what the main characteristics of friendship networks are and how the users’ attribution affect the friendship ties establishment in the online health forum. This study uses the Exponential Random Graph Model to examine the characteristics of friendship networks and explores the effect of user attributions on the friendship ties establishment in the online health forum. The results indicated that friendship networks exhibit transitivity characteristics; meanwhile, user homophily, in terms of social identify, social activeness, age as well as geographical location have positive effects on the friendship ties establishment. The study could help patients uncover the underline mechanisms of friendship networks formation, as well shed light on how to facilitate users to make friends and finally promote prosperity effectively for the online health platform.
Wang, Lin-Wei; Liu, Xuan; and Li, Jia, "THE ESTABLISHMENT OF FRIENDHSIP TIES IN THE ONLINE HEALTH FORUM BASED ON EXPONENTIAL RANDOM GRAPH MODEL" (2016). PACIS 2016 Proceedings. 164.