A Model for the Antecedents of Member Loyalty: The Case of USENET Newsgroup

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Kyung Woo Kang, College of Business Administration, University of Rhode Island, Seung Kyoon Shin, College of Business Administration, University of Rhode Island


Within the domain of research into online communities, research investigating the factors contributing to the sustainability of those online communities has been relatively sparse. This study is an empirical investigation of such factors in one of the largest online communities, USENET. As a measure of sustainability of online communities, member loyalty is assessed using a returning member ratio. Factors that have positive impacts on sustainability are derived from several communication characteristics such as breadth, depth, responsiveness, and social identity. The relationships between sustainability and those factors are empirically examined using multiple regression models.


Online community, virtual community, USENET, member-loyalty, communication breadth, communication depth, responsiveness, social identity



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