An investigation of information sharing and seeking behaviors in online investment communities

Jae Hong Park, Bin Gu, Alvin Chung Man Leung, Prabhudev Konana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Scopus citations


Social networks have attracted significant attention in academic research. Nevertheless, there is a paucity of research on simultaneous information seeking and sharing behaviors in online social networks. In this research, we investigate why and how weakly connected members participate in online investment communities. We propose a theoretical model to simultaneously analyze two types of user behavior - information seeking and information sharing. Based on a survey of 502 members of one of the largest online investment communities in South Korea, we validate our model. We find that sense of belonging, entertainment value, and perceived usefulness are significant antecedent factors of both intention to share and intention to seek, which subsequently lead to information sharing and information seeking behaviors. Also, reputation seeking enhances intention to share while perceived knowledge reduces intention to seek. Furthermore, intention to seek is positively related to information seeking behavior; however, negatively related to information sharing behavior, and intention to share is positively related to only information sharing behavior. Our research enriches extant literature on social networks by providing new insights to help understand user participation behaviors in online communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2014


  • Behavioral intentions
  • Information seeking and sharing behaviors
  • Social-psychological theory
  • Stock message boards
  • Weak-tie network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Psychology(all)


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