Quotation Willems, Jurgen, Waldner, Carolin, Ronquillo, John. 2019. Reputation Star Society: Are star ratings consulted as substitute or complementary information? Decision Support Systems (DSS). 124




To simplify decision making processes, online platforms frequently display reputation star ratings as an indication of the quality of a product, service, or organization. Can information provided by such star ratings draw away attention from other information? This is an important question for platform developers to adjust the use of such ratings. We conduct a between-subjects laboratory experiment (n = 121) where we manipulate the difference between the reputation star ratings of two social profit organizations, and ask respondents to indicate which organization they prefer. Applying eye-tracking technology, we analyze how the visual attention between the treatment conditions differs. Our findings show that reputation star ratings are consulted as complementary information, rather than as substitute information. Moreover, the results suggest that the lack of stars – not the presence of more stars – attracts visual attention.


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  • Online reputation systems
  • Star ratings
  • Eye-tracking
  • Decision-making
  • experiment

Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Decision Support Systems (DSS)
Citation Index SCI
WU Journalrating 2009 A
WU-Journal-Rating new FIN-A, INF-A, MAR-A, STRAT-B, WH-B
Language English
Title Reputation Star Society: Are star ratings consulted as substitute or complementary information?
Volume 124
Year 2019
Reviewed? Y
URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167923619301095?via%3Dihub
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.dss.2019.113080
Open Access Y
Open Access Link https://epub.wu.ac.at/7136/


Reputation Management for Nonprofit Organizations
Willems, Jurgen (Details)
Ronquillo, John (University of Colorado Denver, United States/USA)
Waldner, Carolin (University of Hamburg, Germany)
Institute for Public Management and Governance IN (Details)
Research areas (ÖSTAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
1127 Information science (Details)
5234 Administrative science (Details)
5308 Management sciences (Details)
5320 Marketing (Details)
5363 Non-profit-sector research (NPO, NPI) (Details)
5912 Social sciences (interdisciplinary) (Details)
6906 Public research (Details)
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