Differences in online reviews caused by distribution channels

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Since the use of social networks has become part of daily life for most people, many online travel agencies (OTAs) are allowing customers to log in using account credentials for social network services like Facebook (social network interface systems, SNIS) without having to create a local account on OTA sites themselves. This research explores the roles of SNIS in review generation on OTAs. For this purpose, we collected more than 174,000 online reviews for London hotels, posted from 2015 to 2016 on TripAdvisor.com. Through a series of analyses, we find that (1) concerning review generation, the portion of online reviews posted via SNIS shows no significant increase during the period; (2) reviews posted via SNIS tend to have lower ratings and be shorter than reviews posted via local accounts; (3) the channel itself, whether SNIS or a local account, does not have a direct impact on perceived review helpfulness.

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Tourism Management



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