Modeling the factors affecting individuals' use of community networks: A theoretical explanation of community-based information and communication technology use



Understanding users' attitudes and perceptions and their influence on behavior is crucial to predict the use of community information and communication technology. In this study, the authors attempt to uncover this process by elaborating on I. Ajzen's (1985, 1991) theory of planned behavior (TPB), a widely applied social behavior model. The developed structural equation model (SEM) was tested using a sample of 417 users of a community network. The final selected model, which was called the community network use model, included seven predictors of use: three behavioral beliefs (i.e., Learning, Social Interactions, and Community Connection), Normative Beliefs Individuals, Attitude, Subjective Norm, and Intention. In particular, Intention moderated the relationships between Use and the other six variables. Further, beliefs in both Community Connection and Social Interactions were directly related to community network use, as was Attitude. Belief in Community Connection was indirectly and positively related to community network use via Intention; Belief in Community Connection was directly and negatively related to Use. These latter two findings suggest that Belief in Community Connection serves as both a facilitator and inhibitor of community network use depending on whether belief is followed by intention. Implications are discussed.