Sense of Virtual Community

Sense of Virtual Community

Anita Blanchard (University of North Carolina at Charlotte, USA)
Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-863-5.ch025
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Abstract

Sense of virtual community is an important component of successful virtual communities. Defined as members’ feelings of belonging, identity, and attachment with each other in computer-mediated communication, sense of virtual community distinguishes virtual communities from mere virtual groups. Sense of virtual community is believed to come from members’ exchange of social support as well as creating their own identity and learning the identity of others members. It is believed to lead to positive outcomes such as increased satisfaction and communication with the virtual community as well as to greater trust and social capital in the larger face-to-face community or organization. Future research will be able to further develop the theoretical and empirical contributions of sense of virtual community in computer-medication communication research.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Technological Features: Components of the group software that can affect how well or poorly the group functions.

Technological Features: Components of the group software that can affect how well or poorly the group functions.

Creating and Learning Identity: The processes by which members let others know about themselves and learn about others in the community. It can include identity features as well as simply the messages exchanged.

Norms: Expected and acceptable behaviors within the group.

Virtual Community: A group of people who interact primarily through CMC and who have developed a sense of virtual community with each other.

Exchanging Support: The processes by which members observe and participate in providing support to each other in the community.

Exchanging Support: The processes by which members observe and participate in providing support to each other in the community.

Sense of Virtual Community: An individual’s feelings of identity, belonging, and attachment with a virtual group. It is a defining feature of virtual communities.

Sense of Virtual Community: An individual’s feelings of identity, belonging, and attachment with a virtual group. It is a defining feature of virtual communities.

Sense of Community: An individual’s feelings of membership, identity, belonging, and attachment with a face-to-face group.

Norms: Expected and acceptable behaviors within the group.

Virtual Community: A group of people who interact primarily through CMC and who have developed a sense of virtual community with each other.

Sense of Community: An individual’s feelings of membership, identity, belonging, and attachment with a face-to-face group.

Creating and Learning Identity: The processes by which members let others know about themselves and learn about others in the community. It can include identity features as well as simply the messages exchanged.

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