Effects of technical and social design on virtual community identification: A comparison approach
We investigated how virtual community (VC) design, both technical and social decisions adopted by VC management teams, might affect the development of members' identification with the VC. Adopting a comparison approach developed in studying formal organisational identification, we develop the research model explaining the effects of VC design on VC identification. A survey study involving 412 members from seven VCs revealed that identified VC design factors (community presentation and community empowerment) have significant impacts on identification by making the perceived VC identities attractive. We concluded with a discussion of the key managerial and research implications of our findings.