PACIS 2019 Proceedings


Effectiveness of Non-Persistent Social Status as Incentive MechanismTwenty-ThirdPacific Asia Conferenceon Information Systems, China2019The Effectiveness of Non-Persistent Social Status as anIncentive MechanismCompleted Research PaperXuan WeiEller College of ManagementUniversity of ArizonaTucson, AZ 85721, United Statesweix@email.arizona.eduMingyue ZhangInternational Business SchoolBeijing Foreign Studies UniversityBeijing 100089, Dajun ZengEller College of ManagementUniversity of ArizonaTucson, AZ 85721, United Stateszeng@email.arizona.eduAbstractContent sharing platforms such as product review websites largely depend on users’ voluntary contributions. In order to motivateusersto contribute more, many platforms established reputation-based incentive mechanisms.Though the academic community has devoted much effort to study the effectiveness of these mechanisms, most of the existing research has focused on everlasting reputations such as badges and points. It’s still largely underexploredhow non-persistent social status actually influencesuser’sbehaviorranging fromcontribution level, the opinion they express,tohow they express. In this paper, we answerthis question by examiningdata from Yelp Elite Squad where reviewers with good reviewing history are awarded into the elite group and most importantly re-evaluated each year.By applying propensity score matching and difference-in-differencemethods,we find that in short term, reviewers significantly increase their contribution levelsafter acquiring the non-persistent social status, become more conservative with lower percentage of extreme ratings, and also increase the readability of their reviews.In long term, they continue to improve the quality of reviews while their numerical rating behaviorsstabilize.Our research hassignificantimplications and actionable insights forbusiness models that rely on user contributions.