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Engagement in a newly launched online support community for complex regional pain syndrome: membership growth, header analysis and introductory messages

Smedley, Richard; Coulson, Neil S.; Gavin, Jeff; Rodham, Karen

Authors

Richard Smedley richsmedley@gmail.com

Jeff Gavin

Karen Rodham



Abstract

Several studies have investigated forum engagement, with a small but growing body of research focusing on the number of people using a forum (membership growth), how they use it (header analysis) and how they introduce themselves (introductory messages). Most studies use established forums and little is known about newly launched forums. This study examines engagement in a newly launched forum for complex regional pain syndrome. Results showed that membership growth occurred in bursts that were closely linked to promotional strategies. Header analysis showed the forum was used throughout the day, evening and night, with a focus on providing support as well as receiving it. Introductory messages took the form of disease stories with six themes: personal details, precipitating event, symptoms, treatment, living with CRPS, and reasons for joining. Implications and areas for future research are discussed.

Citation

Smedley, R., Coulson, N. S., Gavin, J., & Rodham, K. (2016). Engagement in a newly launched online support community for complex regional pain syndrome: membership growth, header analysis and introductory messages. International Journal of Web Based Communities, 12(2), https://doi.org/10.1504/IJWBC.2016.077259

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 30, 2015
Publication Date May 31, 2016
Deposit Date Nov 16, 2016
Publicly Available Date Nov 16, 2016
Journal International Journal of Web Based Communities
Print ISSN 1477-8394
Electronic ISSN 1741-8216
Publisher Inderscience
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 12
Issue 2
DOI https://doi.org/10.1504/IJWBC.2016.077259
Keywords Complex Regional Pain Syndrome; Online support groups; Patient interaction; Membership growth; Header analysis; Introductory messages; Thematic analysis
Public URL http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/38757
Publisher URL http://www.inderscienceonline.com/doi/abs/10.1504/IJWBC.2016.077259
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf
Additional Information © 2015 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf





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