Journal Cover
Online Information Review
Number of Followers: 197  
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 1468-4527 - ISSN (Online) 1468-4535
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  • Ownership and control over publicly accessible platform data
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine how claims to “ownership” are asserted over publicly accessible platform data and critically assess the nature and scope of rights to reuse these data. Design/methodology/approach Using Airbnb as a case study, this paper examines the data ecosystem that arises around publicly accessible platform data. It analyzes current statute and case law in order to understand the state of the law around the scraping of such data. Findings This paper demonstrates that there is considerable uncertainty about the practice of data scraping, and that there are risks in allowing the law to evolve in the context of battles between business competitors without a consideration of the broader public interest in data scraping. It argues for a data ecosystem approach that can keep the public dimension issues more squarely within the frame when data scraping is judicially considered. Practical implications The nature of some sharing economy platforms requires that a large subset of their data be publicly accessible. These data can be used to understand how platform companies operate, to assess their compliance with laws and regulations and to evaluate their social and economic impacts. They can also be used in different kinds of data analytics. Such data are therefore sought after by civil society organizations, researchers, entrepreneurs and regulators. This paper considers who has a right to control access to and use of these data, and addresses current uncertainties in how the law will apply to scraping activities, and builds an argument for a consideration of the public interest in data scraping. Originality/value The issue of ownership/control over publicly accessible information is of growing importance; this paper offers a framework for approaching these legal questions.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-05-14T06:49:52Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-02-2018-0053
  • Datafication, dataveillance, and the social credit system as China’s
           new normal
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is twofold: first, to explore how China uses a social credit system as part of its “data-driven authoritarianism” policy; and second, to investigate how datafication, which is a method to legitimize data collection, and dataveillance, which is continuous surveillance through the use of data, offer the Chinese state a legitimate method of monitoring, surveilling and controlling citizens, businesses and society. Taken together, China’s social credit system is analyzed as an integrated tool for datafication, dataveillance and data-driven authoritarianism. Design/methodology/approach This study combines the personal narratives of 22 Chinese citizens with policy analyses, online discussions and media reports. The stories were collected using a scenario-based story completion method to understand the participants’ perceptions of the recently introduced social credit system in China. Findings China’s new social credit system, which turns both online and offline behaviors into a credit score through smartphone apps, creates a “new normal” way of life for Chinese citizens. This data-driven authoritarianism uses data and technology to enhance citizen surveillance. Interactions between individuals, technologies and information emerge from understanding the system as one that provides social goods, using technologies, and raising concerns of privacy, security and collectivity. An integrated critical perspective that incorporates the concepts of datafication and dataveillance enhances a general understanding of how data-driven authoritarianism develops through the social credit system. Originality/value This study builds upon an ongoing debate and an emerging body of literature on datafication, dataveillance and digital sociology while filling empirical gaps in the study of the global South. The Chinese social credit system has growing recognition and importance as both a governing tool and a part of everyday datafication and dataveillance processes. Thus, these phenomena necessitate discussion of its consequences for, and applications by, the Chinese state and businesses, as well as affected individuals’ efforts to adapt to the system.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-05-08T02:13:35Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-08-2018-0231
  • Open government for all' Co-creating digital public services for older
           adults through data walks
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to review interventions/methods for engaging older adults in meaningful digital public service design by enabling them to engage critically and productively with open data and civic tech. Design/methodology/approach The paper evaluates data walks as a method for engaging non-tech-savvy citizens in co-design work. These were evaluated along a framework considering how such interventions allow for sharing control (e.g. over design decisions), sharing expertise and enabling change. Findings Within a co-creation project, different types of data walks may be conducted, including ideation walks, data co-creation walks or user test walks. These complement each other with respect to how they facilitate the sharing of control and expertise, and enable change for a variety of older citizens. Practical implications Data walks are a method with a low-threshold, potentially enabling a variety of citizens to engage in co-design activities relating to open government and civic tech. Social implications Such methods address the digital divide and further social participation of non-tech-savvy citizens. They value the resources and expertise of older adults as co-designers and partners, and counter stereotypical ideas about age and ageing. Originality/value This pilot study demonstrates how data walks can be incorporated into larger co-creation projects.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-04-10T01:36:49Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-02-2018-0059
  • The academic web profile as a genre of “self-making”
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The activities of academic researchers are increasingly regulated by neo-liberal ideals, including expectations that researchers are visible online and actively promote their output. The purpose of this paper is to explore how researchers take on this responsibility. It uses the concepts of genre, authorship and self-writing in order to understand how the story of an academic life is constructed on academic web profiles. Design/methodology/approach A qualitative content analysis was conducted of material on 64 profiles belonging to 20 researchers on institutional and personal websites, as well as on ResearchGate, and Google Scholar. Findings The study shows that while institutional websites primarily contain researcher-produced material, content on commercial platforms is often co-constructed through distributed authorship by the researcher, the platform and other platform users. Nine different ways in which the profile of an “academic self” may be said to highlight the particular strengths of a researcher are identified. These include both metrics-based strengths and qualitative forms of information about the academic life, such as experience, the importance of their research and good teaching. Social implications This study of academic web profiles contributes to a better understanding of how researchers self-govern the story of their academic self, or resist such governance, in online environments. Originality/value The study furthers the knowledge of how researchers make use of and respond to digital tools for online visibility opportunities and how the story of the “academic self” is “made” for such public presentation.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-04-02T10:57:08Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-12-2017-0347
  • Examining the intellectual capital web reporting by Spanish universities
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is threefold: first, to know the views of university stakeholders concerning intellectual capital (IC) reporting; second, to examine the quality of voluntary IC disclosure by public Spanish universities on their websites; and third, to analyze some of the potential factors affecting this kind of disclosure. Design/methodology/approach The paper applies a content analysis and a survey. The content analysis was used to analyze the websites of 50 public Spanish universities in the year 2016, while the survey was submitted to all members of the Social Councils of Spanish public universities. Also, a regression analysis (ordinary least square model) is conducted to relate the disclosure index to its determinants. Findings The results of this study show that human capital was the most disclosed category with relational capital being the least frequently disclosed. However, the quality of structural capital disclosures was higher than relational and human capital. Moreover, the results show that size and university’s internationality affect IC disclosure in Spanish public universities. Practical implications This paper stimulates the debate between universities and policy-makers concerning the benefits related to IC reporting as a tool for addressing different stakeholders’ needs. In order to satisfy the information needs of university stakeholders, Spanish universities can be recommended to focus on reporting higher quality information on financial relations, students’ satisfaction, quality standard, work-related knowledge/know-how and collaboration between universities and other organizations such as firms, local government and society as a whole. Originality/value This research brings new expertise regarding IC disclosure in higher education and to reveal some of the possible determinants to improve this disclosure.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-03-22T09:24:04Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-02-2018-0048
  • Virtual cohabitation in online dating sites: a netnography analysis
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore in depth the special context and unique life experience of the online dating site and provide insights regarding an interpretation of virtual cohabitation model. Design/methodology/approach This study uses netnography, online interviews and the physical travel of researchers to the field for field participation and observations. The combination of netnography and online interviews combines online and offline studies to achieve more consistency in the data collection, analysis and other processes. In-person participation in observations makes the research more realistic. The combination of these qualitative methods is helpful in achieving a more comprehensive and accurate research process. Findings The findings of the study can be classified into a three-stage situational context approach, which is presented in the form of propositions. Finally, the insight of the virtual cohabitation context model was developed, namely, motivation (including escapism, hedonic gratification and autonomous), showing off and psychological compensation, stimulation and fantasies, emotions (including impulsiveness, emotions and desires), over-control and low self-control, behavioral control, gratification and dependence and love trap (including sex transactions and consumption traps). Originality/value The theoretical contribution of this study is to establish an interpretation of virtual cohabitation model and ten related propositions.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-03-11T08:56:48Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-11-2016-0338
  • Africa’s challenges in the OA movement: risks and possibilities
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to assess the status of the open access (OA) movement on the African continent, and if there is any financial or moral exploitation by dominant “foreign” world powers. OA provided the African intellectual community with a tool to prove its academic prowess and an opportunity to display cultural and intellectual independence. OA publishing is prone to abuse, and some in Africa have sought to exploit the OA boom to profit from non-academic activity rather than use this tool to glorify Africa’s image and diversity on the global intellectual stage. These issues are explored in detail in the paper. Design/methodology/approach The authors broadly assessed literature that is related to the growth and challenges associated with OA, including the rise of OA mega journals, in Africa. Findings African OA journals and publishers have to compete with established non-African OA entities. Some are considered “predatory”, but this Jeffrey Beall-based classification may be erroneous. Publishing values that African OA publishers and journals aspire to should not equal those published by non-African publishing entities. Africa should seek solutions to the challenges on that continent via Africa-based OA platforms. The budding African OA movement is applauded, but it must be held as accountable as any other OA journal or publisher. Originality/value African scholars need to reassess the “published in Africa” OA image.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-03-06T03:39:50Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-04-2018-0152
  • Is online disclosure the key to corporate governance'
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The economic literature shows contradictory results when the relationship between corporate governance and financial position is assessed. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the role of the online disclosure of information, as an omitted variable, in this relationship. Design/methodology/approach In order to test the role of the online disclosure of information, a set of the structural equation models is evaluated. In these models, the indirect effect of the online disclosure on the relationship between corporate governance and the financial position, defined by performance, funding and investment, is analyzed. Findings Using data from a sample of 252 Spanish public non-profits between 2012 and 2016, the authors found that the development of corporate governance practices is not, by itself, able to improve the financial position of these organizations. These improvements can only be achieved if the online disclosure is promoted. Research limitations/implications Organizations should not only follow corporate governance practices but also communicate to the stakeholders the degree of development of these practices in an exercise of accountability. Finally, Web 3.0 practices must be promoted because they can be a mechanism to reinforce corporate governance practices and achieve a solid financial position. Originality/value This study contributes to the debate about the role of the online disclosure, introducing this transparent practice as a variable omitted by previous research. Moreover, the authors have considered the evolution for a period of four years in relation to the information published by each organization on the internet.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-03-06T03:34:10Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-06-2018-0191
  • Who listens to podcasts, and why': the Israeli case
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose Podcasts have become a main content delivery platform in the last decade. Since not enough studies examined the wider population adoption patterns of podcasts in general and outside the USA in particular, the purpose of this paper is to examine the socio-demographics of podcast listeners and the uses and gratifications fulfilled by listening to podcasts using Israel’s most popular podcast as our case study. Design/methodology/approach The authors uploaded a survey on the podcast platforms aiming to identify their socio-demographic profiles of listeners (n=960) and where they listen to the podcast. Next, the authors conducted follow-up interviews with 100 respondents to understand their main uses and gratifications fulfilled while listening to the podcast. Findings The findings of this survey indicate podcast listeners in Israel as mostly male, with self-reported high income, under the age of 45, highly educated and nearly half work in the high-tech sector. Follow-up interviews identified that the main uses and gratifications from listening to podcasts were cognitive – acquiring new knowledge, social – a desire to share new data with friends, entertainment, hobby and a way to assist falling asleep. Research limitations/implications The findings of this study indicate that access to podcasts in Israel is utilized mostly by members of already advantaged and technology-oriented groups, thus potentially widening existing societal gaps. Originality/value The study examines the podcast adoption in a country whose podcast adoption patterns were not yet explored, thus contributes toward mapping of the global usage of podcasts. It portrays podcasts in Israel as a platform used mostly by members of privileged and technology-oriented groups, which is similar to findings regarding the demographics of podcast listeners in the USA. Some of the uses and gratifications are similar to that in the USA while others, such as the desire to share knowledge and efficient time management, are unique and reflect the impact of the local culture and conditions on podcast adoption.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-02-28T10:53:48Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-04-2017-0119
  • Share, comment, but do not like
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the effect of politicians’ facial attractiveness on their online popularity as reflected in audience engagement with their Facebook posts during the 2015 Israeli election campaign. Design/methodology/approach Using Israel’s 2015 election campaign as the case study, the authors analyzed all messages posted (n=501) on 33 politicians’ official Facebook pages during the week leading to Election Day. Findings The results demonstrate that audiences do engage more with posts of the more facially attractive politicians. These posts generated more shares, more comments and more participants in their discussions – but not more likes – relative to posts of less attractive politicians. These effects became even stronger when the posts were accompanied by one or more visual image, and remained significant even after controlling for other engagement predictors, such as a politician’s gender, seniority or the timing of a post’s publication. Social implications The findings emphasize the importance of attractive looks for politicians. The findings highlight that attractive politicians’ posts attract more attention, allowing them to better spread their ideas. Thus, politicians should aim to post aesthetic images and visuals to promote better engagement with their ideas on social media. Originality/value The study expands our understanding of online presentations of politicians, focusing on the effect of politicians’ facial attractiveness on their online popularity. Recent studies have demonstrated that physically attractive politicians enjoy more and better media attention on television news, but not in non-visual media such as radio and newspapers. This effect has not been examined in the social media environment, a central arena for today’s political debates and one that involves many visual messages.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-02-18T04:19:10Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-02-2018-0043
  • Clothing brand purchase intention through SNS
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate the intention to purchase products through clothing brands’ social network sites (SNS) based on the theory of planned behavior and uses and gratifications theory (U&G), and the moderating effects of self-image congruity (SIC). Design/methodology/approach Data were collected from 1,003 followers of their favorite clothing brands’ SNS. Data analysis was performed using structural equation modeling (SEM) and multi-group SEM analysis. The models were estimated from the matrices of variances and covariances by the maximum likelihood procedure using EQS 6.1. Findings The results highlight the positive impact of U&G on attitude, SNS intentions and SNS use, and U&G, SNS intentions and SNS use were seen to be the main antecedents predicting purchase intentions. Furthermore, SIC was found to have moderating effects between SNS attitude and SNS intentions and between SNS intentions and SNS use. Practical implications This research can help clothing brands understand the need to generate brand beliefs, and to develop contents or events to help accomplish the transition from use to purchase. Originality/value This research contributes to the literature by providing a better understanding of intention to use and purchase intention through clothing brands’ SNS pages.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-01-15T03:24:15Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-02-2017-0042
  • The interaction effects of information cascades, system recommendations
           and recommendations on software downloads
    • Abstract: Online Information Review, Ahead of Print.
      Purpose When purchasing digital content (DC), consumers are typically influenced by various information sources on the website. Prior research has mostly focused on the individual effect of the information sources on the DC choice. To fill the gap in the previous studies, this research includes three main effects: information cascades, recommendations and word of mouth. In particular, the purpose of this paper is to focus on the interaction effect of information cascades and recommendations on the number of software downloads. Design/methodology/approach The authors use the panel generalized least squares estimation to test the hypotheses by using a panel data set of 2,000 pieces of software at over a month-long period. Product ranking and recommendation status are used as key independent variables to capture the effects of information cascades and recommendations, respectively. Findings One of this study’s findings is that information cascades positively interact with recommendations to influence the number of software downloads. The authors also show that the impact of information cascades on the number of software downloads is greater than one of the recommendations from a distributor does. Originality/value Information cascades and recommendations have been considered as the primary effects for online product choices. However, these two effects typically are not considered together in one research. As previous studies have mainly focused on each effect, respectively, the authors believe that this study may fill the gap by examining how these effects are interacted to one other to influence customers’ choices. The authors also show that the impact of information cascades on the number of software downloads is greater than one of the recommendations from a system does.
      Citation: Online Information Review
      PubDate: 2019-01-10T10:00:48Z
      DOI: 10.1108/OIR-03-2018-0089
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