Date of Original Version

2007

Type

Conference Proceeding

Rights Management

http://doi.ieeecomputersociety.org/10.1109/HICSS.2007.144

Abstract or Table of Contents

The Internet is widely valued for distributing control over information to a lateral network of individuals, but it is not clear how these networks can most effectively organize themselves. This paper describes the distributed networks of volunteers that emerged online following Hurricane Katrina. Online communities responded to the disaster by facilitating the distribution of donated goods from ordinary people directly to hurricane survivors. These “connected giving” groups faced several challenges: establishing authority within the group, providing relevant information, developing trust in one another, and sustaining the group over time. Two forms of computer-mediated connected giving were observed: small blog communities and large forums. Small blog communities used a centralized authority structure that was more immediately successful in managing information and developing trust, but over time, blog communities were difficult to sustain. Larger and more decentralized forums had greater difficulties focusing the community’s communication and developing trust but sustained themselves over a long period of time.

Comments

©2007 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE. This material is presented to ensure timely dissemination of scholarly and technical work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. In most cases, these works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.

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