User-generated content is common feature of news websites. Individuals use these features to express thoughts, opinions, and suggestions about news stories. Previous research suggests an impact of identity and helper heuristics on specific outcomes in user-generated contributions in online news commenting forums. The current research sought to extend previous research to specifically examining agency cues and information in online heuristic processing. Results suggest that being helpful in computer-mediated contexts results in several positive perceptions for the helpful agent, more so than providing ambiguous cues about the identity of the user posting the content. The findings help establish conditions under which agency affordances positively impact perceptions and have direct implications for the MAIN model.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes