Proceedings of the 34th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (2001)
Jan. 3, 2001 to Jan. 6, 2001
This paper presents a perspective on the impact and use of new media that focuses on the strength of the interpersonal tie connecting communicators. Research shows that more strongly tied pairs communicate more frequently, maintain more and different kinds of relations, and use more media to communicate. It is argued that where ties are strong, communicators adapt their use of media and expand to other media to support the exchanges important to their tie; where ties are weak, communicators rely on few means of contact (often only one), and depend on media and protocols established by others. It is theorized that dependence on a common, widely used medium makes a weak tie network vulnerable to dissolution and reformulation following changes to that medium; by contrast strong ties are more robust under conditions of change since their connection rests on multiple relations and media.
social networks, tie strength, computer-mediated communication, new media, organizational change, organizational communication
C. Haythornthwaite, "The Strength and the Impact of New Media," Proceedings of the 34th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences(HICSS), Maui, Hawaii, 2001, pp. 1019.