Social Networking Sites as an Emerging Organizational Form

8464661409_32aa7a26a6_zBecause the landscape of the digital industry is always changing, its organizational structures have to be more malleable in form; the development of this industry and its products has caused a departure from more rigid, traditional organizational structures. Among the newer structures, social networking sites (SNSs) have emerged as a significant area of study for researchers. As an extension of the study of SNSs as a distinct organizational structure, researchers are examining SNSs as a unique organizational form. Co-authors Matthew S. Weber, Janet Fulk and Peter Monge explore this subject in detail in their article, entitled, “The Emergence and Evolution of Social Networking Sites as an Organizational Form,” published in Management Communication Quarterly. The abstract for the paper:

A number of new organizational structures have emerged in recent years, including peer production networks, digitally organized social movements, and social networking sites (SNSs). Researchers have devoted considerable attention to these phenomena as groups and communities. This article takes a complementary approach by conceptualizing them as organizational forms, with focus on the emergence of
SNSs as a distinct organizational form. Community ecology theory is implemented to explicate the emergence and subsequent legitimation of organizational forms, Current Issue Coverproviding a foundation for understanding how new forms emerge through interaction with the surrounding environment. Industry data and historical records are utilized to illustrate the development of one specific form: online SNSs. This analysis demonstrates that legitimation is an ongoing process of replication of features, but legitimacy also occurs through recognition from adjacent populations. Findings illustrate the validity of alternative processes of form legitimacy.

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*Collage of social network logos credited to Tanja Cappell (CC)
This entry was posted in Communication, Organizational Research, Organizational Studies, Social Media and tagged , , , , , , , by Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, Management INK. Bookmark the permalink.

About Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, Management INK

Founded in 1965, SAGE is the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. Known for our commitment to quality and innovation, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students across a broad range of subject areas. With over 900 employees globally from principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, and Washington DC, our publishing programme includes more than 560 journals and over 800 books, reference works and databases a year in business, humanities, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. Believing passionately that engaged scholarship lies at the heart of any healthy society and that education is intrinsically valuable, SAGE aims to be the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. This means playing a creative role in society by disseminating teaching and research on a global scale, the cornerstones of which are good, long-term relationships, a focus on our markets, and an ability to combine quality and innovation. Leading authors, editors and societies should feel that SAGE is their natural home: we believe in meeting the range of their needs, and in publishing the best of their work. We are a growing company, and our financial success comes from thinking creatively about our markets and actively responding to the needs of our customers.

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