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Using netnography for the study of role-playing in female online games: Interpretation of situational context model

Yi-Sheng Wang (Oriental Institute of Technology, New Taipei City, Taiwan)
Wei-Long Lee (Department of International Business, National Kaohsiung University of Applied Sciences, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
Tsuen-Ho Hsu (National Kaohsiung First University of Science and Technology, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 7 August 2017




The purpose of this paper is to explore in depth the special context and unique life experience of the online role-playing game and to provide insights regarding an interpretation of the situational context model.


This study uses netnography, online interviews, and the physical travel of researchers to the field for field participation and observations. The combination of netnography and online interviews combines online and offline studies to achieve more consistency in the data collection, analysis, and other processes. In-person participation in observations makes the research more realistic. The combination of these qualitative methods is helpful in achieving a more comprehensive and accurate research process.


The findings of the study can be classified into a three-stage situational context approach, which is presented in the form of propositions. Finally, the insight of the situational context model was developed.

Research limitations/implications

This study only focussed on office workers and students in online role-playing game. Therefore, the samples should be extended to other massively multiplayer online games, including different nationalities and professions for comparative analysis and related studies. Through the expansion of the sample size, a representative and stable cyber model can be established.


The theoretical contribution of this study is to establish an interpretation of the situational context model and eight related propositions. The study revealed the mystery of female online role-playing games.



Wang, Y.-S., Lee, W.-L. and Hsu, T.-H. (2017), "Using netnography for the study of role-playing in female online games: Interpretation of situational context model", Internet Research, Vol. 27 No. 4, pp. 905-923.



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