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With social exchange theory as a basis, the purpose of this paper is to seek a better understanding of advice processes in online travel communities, which offer crucial advice for travelers’ decisions. It also predicts that relational capital variables (commitment, reciprocity perceptions) moderate the main relationships.Design/methodology/approachData from a web survey of 456 users of online travel communities affirm the scale’s validity and provide the input for structural equation modeling and multisample analyses of the hypotheses.FindingsHigher levels of commitment reinforce the effect of following past advice on passive and active participation intentions. Users’ perceptions of reciprocity in the community strengthen the influence of following past advice on active participation. However, a high level of reciprocity causes users following past advice to reduce their intentions to continue following that advice.Practical implicationsManagement tactics should specify active and passive participation in online travel communities. Specifically, to encourage the creation of high-quality new content, community managers should create interactive environments marked by high levels of reciprocity and commitment.Originality/valueThis research elucidates the role of relational capital variables in advice processes and advances understanding of online travel communities.
Industrial Management & Data Systems – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 21, 2019
Keywords: Relational capital; Advice; Online community; Active participation; Moderation analysis; Passive participation
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