Oh and LaRose (2016) contended that problem severity and channel publicness shape support seekers’ goals, time spent composing messages, and the sophistication of those messages. The current study seeks to replicate and extend Oh and LaRose’s study to produce a more accurate understanding of the factors that influence the sophistication of support-seeking messages online. Support seekers’ goals varied according to the severity of a stressor and the publicness of a channel, and the amount of time people spent composing a message influenced its sophistication. We extend the original study by examining associations that were not initially tested. Time spent composing messages mediated the influence of problem severity on the quality of people’s messages, and this effect was moderated by channel publicness.
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