• hyperlink network;
  • NGO;
  • evolutionary theory;
  • network analysis

Hyperlink networks are dynamic systems of representational communication. In order to understand the varied influences on processes that produce these systems, this research examines the evolution of a HIV/AIDS nongovernmental organization (NGO) hyperlink network over one year. The results demonstrate that different factors influence the rate of variation, selection, and retention of hyperlinks. The presence of a greater number of corporate or government hyperlinks to a NGO Website is related to the rate of variation. Network embeddedness and issue network participation are related to the selection of hyperlinks. Finally, indegree centrality and issue network participation are related to hyperlink retention. Implications for the study of hyperlink networks as dynamic representational communication systems are drawn from the results.