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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2009

Natalie Clewley, Sherry Y. Chen and Xiaohui Liu

The purpose of this paper is to examine the credibility of internet shopping. Credibility, which refers to the believability of information, is an important consideration…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the credibility of internet shopping. Credibility, which refers to the believability of information, is an important consideration of internet shopping.

Design/methodology/approach

The evaluation is conducted by incorporating Fogg's 10 Stanford Guidelines for Web Credibility into Nielsen's heuristic evaluation. Furthermore, security and individualisation are considered as additional heuristics. Evaluation criteria are developed based on these 12 heuristics. Three UK car insurance web sites are selected for evaluation, including the AA, Norwich Union and Tesco.

Findings

The results show that the Norwich Union site seems to be the most credible while the Tesco site appears to be the least credible. The most significant credibility problems are found to lie in the areas of “trustworthiness”, “expertise” and “real‐world feel”. In other words, these three areas are key issues for future improvement of these sites.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the literature by providing a set of credibility design guidelines, which can be used to support the improved development of future internet shopping designs, especially car insurance web sites.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 10 February 2012

Yvonne Kammerer and Peter Gerjets

Purpose — To provide an overview of recent research that examined how search engine users evaluate and select Web search results and how alternative search engine…

Abstract

Purpose — To provide an overview of recent research that examined how search engine users evaluate and select Web search results and how alternative search engine interfaces can support Web users' credibility assessment of Web search results.

Design/methodology/approach — As theoretical background, Information Foraging Theory (Pirolli, 2007; Pirolli & Card, 1999) from cognitive science and Prominence-Interpretation-Theory (Fogg, 2003) from communication and persuasion research are presented. Furthermore, a range of recent empirical research that investigated the effects of alternative SERP layouts on searchers' information quality or credibility assessments of search results are reviewed and approaches that aim at automatically classifying search results according to specific genre categories are reported.

Findings — The chapter reports on findings that Web users often rely heavily on the ranking provided by the search engines without paying much attention to the reliability or trustworthiness of the Web pages. Furthermore, the chapter outlines how alternative search engine interfaces that display search results in a format different from a list and/or provide prominent quality-related cues in the SERPs can foster searchers' credibility evaluations.

Research limitations/implications — The reported empirical studies, search engine interfaces, and Web page classification systems are not an exhaustive list.

Originality/value — The chapter provides insights for researchers, search engine developers, educators, and students on how the development and use of alternative search engine interfaces might affect Web users' search and evaluation strategies during Web search as well as their search outcomes in terms of retrieving high-quality, credible information.

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Article
Publication date: 21 June 2011

Hend S. Al‐Khalifa and Rasha M. Al‐Eidan

Owing to the large amount of information available on Twitter (a micro blogging service) that is not necessarily true or believable, credibility of news published in such…

Abstract

Purpose

Owing to the large amount of information available on Twitter (a micro blogging service) that is not necessarily true or believable, credibility of news published in such an electronic channel has become an important area for investigation in the field of web credibility. This paper aims to address this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

A system was developed to measure the credibility of news content published in Twitter. The system uses two approaches to assign credibility levels (low, high and average) to each tweet. The first approach is based on the similarity between Twitter posts (tweets) and authentic (i.e. verified) news sources. The second approach is based on the similarity with verified news sources in addition to a set of proposed features.

Findings

The evaluations of the two approaches showed that assigning credibility levels to Twitter tweets for the first approach has a higher precision and recall. Additional experiments showed that the linking feature has its impact on the second approach results.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed system is experimental; thus further experiments are needed to prove these findings.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the research on web credibility. It is believed to be the first which provides a proposed system to evaluate the credibility of Twitter news content automatically.

Details

International Journal of Web Information Systems, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-0084

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 22 July 2020

Hamid Keshavarz

The purpose of this paper is to explore how university students assess the credibility of diverse information available on the Web.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore how university students assess the credibility of diverse information available on the Web.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper used applied study and was conducted using the survey-descriptive method. Using a randomized stratified sampling method and the Cochran sampling formula, a sample including 380 student participants was selected from Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran. Data were gathered by administrating a validated questionnaire including eight components of ethics, writing style, website appearance, website identity, professional information, accuracy, usability and interaction. Data were analyzed by software SPSS 20.0 and LISREL 8.7.

Findings

Confirmatory factor analysis using structural equation modeling indicated that the overall framework is reliable according to the goodness of fit indices for the measurement and structural models showing a high quality on measuring the variable in the context studied. Findings also showed that the components usability, interaction, accuracy, website appearance, writing style, professional information, ethics and website identity had the standard relevance.

Practical implications

Users paid more attention to semantic- and expertise-related features compared to characteristics of the source and its authority. Such preference should be taken into account by providers when producing information and students when evaluating information.

Originality/value

The framework underlying this research had the required quality incorporating a set of most important criteria for exploring Web information evaluation behavior by the students, which is also useful for future related studies.

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. 69 no. 8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9342

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

Mega Subramaniam, Natalie Greene Taylor, Beth St. Jean, Rebecca Follman, Christie Kodama and Dana Casciotti

The purpose of this paper is to focus on disadvantaged tweens’ (ages 11 through 13) strategies for making predictive and evaluative judgments of the credibility of health…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on disadvantaged tweens’ (ages 11 through 13) strategies for making predictive and evaluative judgments of the credibility of health information online. More specifically, this paper identifies the features of Google search results pages and web sites that signal credibility (or lack thereof) to this population and the reasons behind their perceptions.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors employed an ethnographic approach (using various types of data collection methods) targeted to generate in-depth descriptions of tweens making predictive and evaluative judgments of credibility, focussing on the ways in which these tweens naturally assess the credibility of online information.

Findings

The research has yielded novel findings concerning the types of factors that influence disadvantaged tweens’ credibility assessment strategies, such as limited English-language vocabularies, lack of familiarity with perhaps otherwise well-known sources, and forced reliance on (and/or general preference for) non-textual modalities, such as audio and video.

Practical implications

The findings indicate a need for implementing digital literacy programs in a naturalized setting, building on tweens’ existing heuristics and thereby resulting in strategies that are simultaneously compatible with their natural inclinations within the online environment and likely to consistently lead them to accurate credibility-related judgments.

Originality/value

This study provides novel insights into how disadvantaged tweens interact with online health information in a natural context, and offers invaluable information regarding the ways in which credibility assessment processes should be facilitated within formal or informal digital literacy programs.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 71 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 20 March 2019

Markus Kattenbeck and David Elsweiler

It is well known that information behaviour can be biased in countless ways and that users of web search engines have difficulty in assessing the credibility of results…

Abstract

Purpose

It is well known that information behaviour can be biased in countless ways and that users of web search engines have difficulty in assessing the credibility of results. Yet, little is known about how search engine result page (SERP) listings are used to judge credibility and in which if any way such judgements are biased. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

Two studies are presented. The first collects data by means of a controlled, web-based user study (N=105). Studying judgements for three controversial topics, the paper examines the extent to which users agree on credibility, the extent to which judgements relate to those applied by objective assessors and to what extent judgements can be predicted by the users’ position on and prior knowledge of the topic. A second, qualitative study (N=9) utilises the same setup; however, transcribed think-aloud protocols provide an understanding of the cues participants use to estimate credibility.

Findings

The first study reveals that users are very uncertain when assessing credibility and their impressions often diverge from objective judges who have fact checked the sources. Little evidence is found indicating that judgements are biased by prior beliefs or knowledge, but differences are observed in the accuracy of judgements across topics. Qualitatively analysing think-aloud transcripts from participants think-aloud reveals ten categories of cues, which participants used to determine the credibility of results. Despite short listings, participants utilised diverse cues for the same listings. Even when the same cues were identified and utilised, different participants often interpreted these differently. Example transcripts show how participants reach varying conclusions, illustrate common mistakes made and highlight problems with existing SERP listings.

Originality/value

This study offers a novel perspective on how the credibility of SERP listings is interpreted when assessing search results. Especially striking is how the same short snippets provide diverse informational cues and how these cues can be interpreted differently depending on the user and his or her background. This finding is significant in terms of how search engine results should be presented and opens up the new challenge of discovering technological solutions, which allow users to better judge the credibility of information sources on the web.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 71 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2008

R. David Lankes

This paper seeks to understand how users determine credibility in the internet environment from a conceptual level and the implications of these new methods of credibility

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to understand how users determine credibility in the internet environment from a conceptual level and the implications of these new methods of credibility determination on internet tools (primarily software) and services.

Design/methodology/approach

The author first examines the underlying reasons for increased dependence on the internet for information, using electronic commerce as a starting point. The central concept of “information self‐sufficiency” is introduced and then examined through the lens of the internet and conversation theory.

Findings

The author finds that users are shifting from more traditional “authority” methods of credibility determination, where users cede determinations to trusted third parties, to a “reliability” approach where users seek commonalities and coherence among multiple information sources. This has led to an increased pressure for participation and openness at all levels of the internet.

Research limitations/implications

Studies on users and credibility must better account for often invisible technical factors.

Practical implications

Libraries must take into account a greater need for participation and technical fluency when dealing with patrons, particularly in information literacy programs and instruction.

Originality/value

This paper presents a large‐scale conceptual approach to credibility on the internet. It seeks to inform current approaches to the subject nested in communications and instruction with the unique technical environment of the internet.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 64 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 November 2014

Lluisa Llamero

The purpose of this paper is to find out how credibility judgements intervene in the consumption of electronic-Word of Mouth (e-WOM) in tourism, as there is discrepancy in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to find out how credibility judgements intervene in the consumption of electronic-Word of Mouth (e-WOM) in tourism, as there is discrepancy in the literature about its influence on decision-making processes.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach is explored, based on semi-structured interviews and observation through think-aloud protocol. This methodology provides fruitful insights as it focuses on the users’ browsing habits. The author interviewed a sample of professionals of tourism, cybertourists and bloggers.

Findings

Results reveal that only part of e-WOM is granted credibility. Therefore, its persuasiveness depends on those limited positive judgements. Travellers use a conceptual mindset and a series of cognitive heuristics (homophily, crowd consensus, etc.) to assess credibility. Formal knowledge background and social pressures have proven to be weak.

Research limitations/implications

This study is limited to a reduced sample of informants but their adjustment to the most typical profiles interviewed compensates this restriction. Another limitation is that data comes from a single cultural context (Spain), but on the other hand provides data that did not exist in the international literature on the topic.

Practical implications

Outcomes can help tourism managers to monitor key heuristics employed by end-users in webs of e-WOM and detect new trends of travelling habits.

Originality/value

The paper is original in that it establishes the rationalities behind the daily use of cognitive heuristics explored through different traveller's profiles.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 38 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 28 September 2010

Chung Joo Chung, Hyunjung Kim and Jang Hyun Kim

The purpose of this paper is to discover the primary components of credibility of three types of online newspapers and how the credibility of news differs by type.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discover the primary components of credibility of three types of online newspapers and how the credibility of news differs by type.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper participants were recruited at a large north‐eastern US university. All items of credibility scales were measured using seven‐point Likert‐type scales. For each of the three credibility scales, the mean was computed and the scales were analysed for similarities and differences. The scales were factor analysed to determine their underlying dimensions.

Findings

Three factors (expertise, trustworthiness, and attractiveness) were common to the three types, but the different factor structure of each type was identified. The result of multiple comparisons shows that the differences between all three types of online newspapers were significant. Also the summated scores of the mainstream type were the highest on most items. However, the summated score of the index type of online newspaper was the highest on attractiveness. Overall participants rated the independent type of online newspapers lowest in credibility.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations and implications of findings are examined in three dimensions: theoretical implications, implications for the online newspaper industry, and implications for strategic media use.

Originality/value

The paper divides online newspapers into three categories according to their characteristics: mainstream, independent, and index type. These three types of online newspapers were evaluated in terms of credibility structure, which made this study useful and unique.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 34 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 11 November 2014

Hao Han, Hidekazu Nakawatase and Keizo Oyama

The purpose of this article was to confirm whether users’ interests are reflected by tweeted Web pages, and to evaluate the credibility of interest reflection of tweeted…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article was to confirm whether users’ interests are reflected by tweeted Web pages, and to evaluate the credibility of interest reflection of tweeted Web pages.

Design/methodology/approach

Interest reflection of Twitter is investigated based on the context of sharing behavior. A context-oriented approach is proposed to evaluate the interest reflection of tweeted Web pages based on machine learning. Some different distribution models of similarity are present, and infer whether tweeted Web pages reflect respective users’ interests by analyzing user access profiles.

Findings

The analysis of browsing behaviors finds that many users partially hide their own concerns, hobbies and interests, and emphasize the concerns about social phenomenon. The extensive experimental results showed the context-oriented approach is effective on real net view data.

Originality/value

As the first-of-its-kind study on evaluating the credibility of interest reflection on Twitter, extensive experiments have been conducted on the data sets containing real net view data. For higher accuracy and less subjectivity, various features are generated from user’s Web view and Twitter submission background with some different context factors.

Details

International Journal of Web Information Systems, vol. 10 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-0084

Keywords

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