Structural diversity and tie strength in the purchase of a social networking app

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although people increasingly rely on online services to maintain their relationships, we know relatively little about what drives their use. To address this, I analyze data from a social networking site that started charging its users for an app that populates their e-mail address books with updated contact information. I find that purchase rates of the app were higher for users with large, structurally diverse networks - which contain several distinct social groups. Moreover, personal ties (i.e., family members and friends) increased purchase rates more than professional ties. I attribute the first effect to the difficulty of obtaining information about a large, diverse social network, which the app reduces, and the second effect to the regularity with which people use information about their personal ties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of the Association for Information Science and Technology
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems and Management
  • Library and Information Sciences


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