Networked individualism on the Chinese Wikipedia community

Yuan Ze University Graduate school of Social informatics Shih, Pei-Chun

Virtual community
• Development of Internet has great impacts on social interaction. • People grouped together and formed virtual communities. In communities, they share information and common goal. • In Chat rooms, Internet forums, Electronic mailing lists they formed virtual community.

Virtual community
• Peter Kollock (1999)
– Motivations for contributing to online communities: Sense of community – Sense of community can improve personal social resource through strengths of interpersonal relationship. (Ahlbrandt & Cunningham, 1979)

Networked individualism
• With development of ICTs and social software(i.e. IMs, Blogs), Wellman (2002)raised a new form of communication type – networked individualism.
– Person to person – Place to place – Person to person • Effects
– Reduced sense of community.

– Improve personal social resource

In this period, difficult traffic made people hard to communication.

Door to door

In this period, New transports helped people communicated without time and space.

Place to place

Group to group

Person to person

The ability to connect with multiple social milieus, with limited involvement in each milieu.

Research question
• If networked individualism may reduce sense of community and become the main communication type, is there a new type of sense of community ? • Both sense of community and networked individualism can improve personal social resource, in the virtual community which will be main factor of getting social resource?

• Target community: Chinese Wikipedia community
– They present highly networked individualism.

• Internet survey
– Sampling frame: 1191 users – 381 valid respondents – Response rate: 32%

• Variable definition
– SES: gender, age, education, income, and access Internet. – Sense of community: constructed by sense of community index(Chavis, 1986) – Networked individualism: constructed by "Little Boxes, Glocalization, and Networked Individualism." appendix. (Wellman, 2002)

• Factor analysis • Sense of community and networked individualism divided into three variables. • Original sense of community demarcated two variables, new variable names “pluralism”.

• Regression analysis • The main factor of getting social resource is networked individualism.

• In Chinese Wikipedia community, networked individualism is more important than sense of community. • New forms of sense of community: without the same point of view, but more common goals.

• Reputation system in the community of Web 2.0
– In regression table, reputation seems to be the most important factor for personal contribution.

Thanks for your concentration