Salient design features that your social media platform needs: The case of online communities of interest
Keywords:Social media platform, salient design feature, online community of interest
We discuss the importance of salient design features (which support purposeful action and relate to functional affordances) of customer-to-customer social media platforms that support communities of interest, focussed on open-ended data and user tasks, in contrast to business-to-customer platforms, focussed on relatively fixed data and transactions. We provide an exposition of their design features, shedding light on how they support tasks of searching and decision-making in which users elicit knowledge from their community, for targeted needs to needs which are less known and speculative. We also discuss that how our findings can be useful for designing social media platforms that support other types of online communities such as online communities of practice. Our research contributes to the ongoing discourse in the information systems field about the importance of identifying and articulating the salient design features of an information technology that is useful for theory and practice.
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