Influence of Social Presence on Sense of Virtual Community

Virtual Internet communities have emerged that feature cross-platform, interactive, diversified, and personalized functions, enabling members to share ideas, interests, information, feelings, knowledge, and experiences with other members in a lifelike environment. In this study, we investigated how a sense of virtual community is formed in the online environments where users communicate and build interpersonal relationships. We adopted a questionnaire survey method, selecting Wretch users as the study participants. We analyzed 196 valid questionnaires using structural equation modeling. The results revealed that a positive relationship existed between social presence and sense of virtual community and between naturalness (an element of social presence) and membership status, community support, and sense of attachment (elements of sense of virtual community). Objectivity (an element of social presence) only exhibited a positive relationship with membership status and community support (elements of sense of virtual community). According to these results, we offered a reference for future studies.

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