Dynamics of Peer Production of Knowledge in Online Social Q&A Communities: A Life-Cycle Perspective of Successful and Failed Cases
Association for Computing Machinery
Online peer production communities, such as Wikipedia, Yahoo Answers, and Stack Overflow, not only generate knowledge resources with low cost access, but also have tremendous potential to complement both online and offline movement of societies. As peer production communities flourished, merely describing successful cases has become less useful. Instead, scholars must identify the dynamics, structures, and conditions that contribute to or impede that success, including how communities change, what makes some communities succeed while others fail, and how and when to intervene successfully. In this dissertation project I combine Activity Theory, computational techniques, and qualitative and quantitative methods to understand the differences of dynamics, structures, and conditions of two social Q&A communities that produced contrasting results within the same context, based on the community life cycle.