Collective Intentional Action in Virtual Communities

Collective Intentional Action in Virtual Communities

Richard P. Bagozzi (Rice University, USA) and Utpal M. Dholakia (Rice University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-553-5.ch080
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Abstract

The Internet is an important innovation in information science and technology and profoundly affects people in their daily lives. To date, these effects have been construed in overly individualistic ways and often all too negatively. For example, the Internet is seen by many as an individual means for obtaining or sending information flexibly and efficiently (e.g., Dreyfus, 2001). Some researchers also claim that participation on the Internet often leads to feelings of isolation and depression and even negatively affects relationships with one’s family members and friends (Kraut et al., 1998; cf. Kraut et al., 2002; UCLA Internet Report, 2003). Likewise, Dreyfus (2001) takes a generally pessimistic tone with regard to Internet usage and worries that when we engage the Internet, it “diminishes one’s sense of reality and of the meaning in one’s life” and “…we might…lose some of our crucial capacities: our ability to make sense of things so as to distinguish the relevant from the irrelevant, our sense of the seriousness of success and failure that is necessary for learning, and our need to get a maximum grip on the world that gives us our sense of the reality of things.”

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