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Impact of monetary and non-monetary social functions on users' knowledge-sharing intentions in online social Q&A communities

Lin Jia (School of Management and Economics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China)
Chen Lin (School of Management and Economics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China)
Yiran Qin (China Institute of Nuclear Industry Strategy, Beijing, China)
Xiaowen Pan (School of Management and Economics, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, China)
Zhongyun Zhou (School of Economics and Management, Tongji University, Shanghai, China)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 27 September 2022

128

Abstract

Purpose

With the rapid development of paid online social question and answer (Q&A) communities, monetary social functions have been introduced and have potential benefits for both platforms and users. However, these functions' impact on knowledge contribution remains uncertain. This study proposes a conceptual model based on the stimulus–organism–response framework, according to which monetary and non-monetary social functions can help nurture short-term and long-term relationships among community users, and thereafter improves social identity and knowledge-sharing intentions.

Design/methodology/approach

This study selects Zhihu, a famous online social Q&A community in China, and conducts an online survey to collect data from its frequent users. A sample of 286 valid questionnaires was collected to test our research model by using a structural equation modeling method. In addition, a bootstrapping approach is used to test the mediation effect.

Findings

Results indicate that monetary social functions help nurture short-term and long-term relationships among community users. However, non-monetary social functions only affect short-term relationships directly. Short-term and long-term relationships both have a positive relationship with social identity and thereafter improve users' knowledge-sharing intentions.

Originality/value

This study focuses on users' knowledge-sharing intentions in Q&A communities from the perspective of social. Specifically, we separated social functions in Q&A platforms into monetary and non-monetary ones and explored their impact on the development of short-term and long-term relationships. Results demonstrate the importance of monetary social functions and explain how monetary and non-monetary social functions affect users' knowledge-sharing intentions in different approaches.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant ID: NSFC 72172013); Special Fund for Joint Development Program of Beijing Municipal Commission of Education.

Citation

Jia, L., Lin, C., Qin, Y., Pan, X. and Zhou, Z. (2022), "Impact of monetary and non-monetary social functions on users' knowledge-sharing intentions in online social Q&A communities", Internet Research, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/INTR-08-2021-0568

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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