تجزیه و تحلیل تبادلات حمایت اجتماعی در گروههای خودیاری HIV / AIDS آنلاین
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|33901||2009||8 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||7026 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Computers in Human Behavior, Volume 25, Issue 4, July 2009, Pages 911–918
Hundreds of thousands of people sharing concerns about HIV/AIDS have taken advantage of online self-help groups to exchange resources and support. Little research so far has focused on the nature and content of actual messages exchanged by group members. To provide an in-depth understanding of social support exchanges in online HIV/AIDS self-help groups, this study identifies and analyzes the dimensions and corresponding frequencies of exchanged social support as well as the group interactions facilitating those exchanges. A total of 5000 postings created within a 1 year period were randomly selected from a selected online HIV/AIDS forum. Content analysis was then conducted to assess the types and proportions of exchanged social support. A thematic analysis of the postings that could not be categorized with the adopted coding system was performed to find further patterns of positive group interactions. The results show that information support (41.6%) and emotional support (16.0%) were exchanged most frequently, followed by network support (6.8%) and esteem support exchanges (6.4%), whereas tangible assistance was quite rare (0.8%). The authors also suggest that three types of group interactions including sharing personal experience, expression of gratitude, and offering congratulations can facilitate social support exchanges among group members.
Computer-mediated self-help (CMSH) groups allow individuals to communicate with others who share an interest in the group’s theme, often in the context of exchanging support. These groups use either asynchronous (e.g., e-mail) or synchronous (e.g., chat rooms) computer-mediated communication (CMC) to perform their functions. The common feature is that group members express themselves by typing on a computer and then sending out messages through the Internet. By December of 2002, about 63 million or 54% of American Internet users had used online support communities and groups for specific medical conditions or personal problems (Fox & Fallows, 2003). This audience is estimated to be considerably larger currently (approximately double), given the Internet’s use growth rate among Americans of 125.6% between 2000 and 2007 (Internet usage, 2007). The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) (UNAIDS, 2006) estimated that there are about 40 million people living with HIV/AIDS worldwide. In the United States, more than one million people have HIV/AIDS and approximately 40,000 people become infected with HIV each year (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1999). This particular population has begun taking advantage of CMSH groups. In August 2007, on Yahoo! Groups alone there were about 900 HIV/AIDS related support groups with thousands of members belonging to several of the larger groups. In addition to those groups hosted by Yahoo! Groups, there are virtually countless other CMSH HIV/AIDS discussion boards and chat rooms. Social support plays an important role in coping with HIV/AIDS. Researchers have found that the more satisfied that individuals are with their social support, the more likely they are to experience positive adjustment to HIV/AIDS, less current depression, and less increase in depression 1 year later, more healthy coping strategies, and lower growth rate of their HIV-related symptoms independent of their coping styles and baseline medical status (Ashton et al., 2005, Hays et al., 1992, Leserman et al., 1992 and Turner-Cobb et al., 2002). It was also revealed that about 40% of the people living with HIV/AIDS have unmet needs for social interaction (Smith & Rapkin, 1995). CMSH HIV/AIDS groups have significant potential for satisfying the social needs of those people by connecting them with others who are faced by the same needs. Uses and effects of CMSH groups have been investigated in studies of groups for people with certain health related issues, such as breast cancer, disabilities, and irritable bowel syndrome (Barak et al., 2008, Blank and Adams-Blodnieks, 2007, Braithwaite et al., 1999, Coulson, 2005, Finn, 1999 and Rodgers and Chen, 2005). Researchers have tried to identify what dimensions of social support are provided in those groups to understand the substantial group activities that contribute to their benefits. To our knowledge, however, no study has been conducted to examine specific social support exchanges in CMSH HIV/AIDS support groups. Thus, the purpose of this study is to provide an in-depth understanding of social support exchanges in CMSH HIV/AIDS groups. Specifically, this research (1) content analyzes 5000 messages that were randomly selected from an online HIV/AIDS forum and created within a 1 year period to identify the types and assess the amounts of social support exchanged and (2) conducts a thematic analysis to propose additional kinds of social interactions that may facilitate social support exchanges.