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Exploring Users’ Information Behavior in Social Networks: The Methods

World Scientific
Publication Date
  • B. Information Use And Sociology Of Information.
  • Cb. User Studies.
  • Design
  • Linguistics


This paper summarizes the methodology and conclusions used on a master thesis that had the research aim of exploring how Web 2.0 and social networks are having an effect on users’ information behavior. The method used for the collection of data was a semi structured interview, containing questions constructed according to the issues of Web 2.0 and social networks identified on the literature, along with typical features or characteristics of social networks. Purposive sampling was used to select the interview participants. The method for analyzing data was discourse analysis and a framework of categories was created to present the data in a certain order. This study identified various trends and tendencies in users’ information behavior and some future directions for research were proposed. Findings of this type of study provide insights to users’ information behavior in information systems, they could contribute to a better understanding of the users and to the design of such systems; this is relevant when it is necessary to build information systems from the point of view of users needs and behaviors, that is, by taking a bottom-up approach.

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