Title page for ETD etd-06102012-113214

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Berger, Jonathan Michael
URN etd-06102012-113214
Document Title Interpersonal online trust in new online social networks
Degree MBA
Department Gordon Institute of Business Science
Advisor Name Title
Ms K Chipp Supervisor
  • trust
  • online trust
  • interpersonal trust
  • online social networks
Date 2012-03-08
Availability unrestricted
This research proposed a new model for online interpersonal trust based on eight properties of new online social networks. Two elements were found to have significant contributions. These were the ability for users to create an online personal profile where their real identity is disclosed, and the ability to create connections to other online users. The user's innate propensity to trust was also validated as a moderating force on online trust. These results have significant implications for further academic research and online practitioners.

Online trust has long been understood as one of the biggest barriers to e-commerce and online business. Various online trust models have been developed and a common theme is the lack of an interpersonal trust component that exists in many real world trust models. Interpersonal trust has been excluded because the internet was considered an impersonal medium. This research argues that the internet has changed to become more personal, and that interpersonal trust is now possible online.

The aim of this research was to assist businesses and web designers in understanding drivers of online trust on the new social web. From an academic perspective the aim was to challenge existing online trust knowledge to include interpersonal trust. An online survey was snowball sampled to South African users of Facebook. The survey tested the contribution of eight properties of new online social networks to online trust. The data was analysed using structural equation modelling and the model was found to have a good fit to the data. Further work however is required on the measurement instrument and sampling.

2011, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Berger, JM 2011, Interpersonal online trust in new online social networks, MBA dissertation, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-06102012-113214/ >


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