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Journal of Information Technology

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 137–151 | Cite as

Exploring temporal coordination of events with Facebook.com

  • Zuhair Khan
  • Sirkka L Jarvenpaa
Research Article

Abstract

The coordination of a social event requires a number of time-bounded tasks (exact time, location, activities of the event) to be determined prior to the event. On university campuses, Facebook is increasingly used to organize ad hoc physical gatherings within social groups. The coordination takes place via Facebook event pages and a ‘wall’ that represent online, shared, interactive spaces. This paper explores how such online interactive spaces facilitate the temporal coordination of social events. We content analyze Facebook's event pages and walls to understand how social group behavior is different from prevailing theories of group task progress and media use. The results suggest that, similar to many work groups, social groups exhibit differential interactive behaviors before and after the midpoint of when the event is created on Facebook and when the offline activity is going to happen. However, the results differ in the sense that the interactive behavior is highest before rather than after the midpoint. We also found that the involvement of the creator of the event pages is associated with higher interactive behavior of the social group. We discuss the findings and derive implications for the design of online tools for social event management.

Keywords

social networking technologies time event management temporal coordination group behavior content analysis 

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Copyright information

© Association for Information Technology Trust 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Business, Technology, and Law, McCombs School of Business, University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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