Projects per year
Consumer-generated online reviews of credence service providers, such as doctors, have become common on platforms such as Yelp and RateMDs. Yet doctors have challenged the legitimacy of these platforms on the grounds that consumers do not have the expertise required to evaluate the quality of the medical care they receive. This challenge is supported by the economics of information literature, which has characterized doctors as a credence service, meaning that consumers cannot evaluate quality even after consumption. Are interventions needed to ensure that consumers are not misled by these reviews? Data from real online reviews shows that many of the claims made in real reviews of credence service providers focus on experience attributes, such as promptness, which consumers can typically evaluate, rather than credence attributes, such as knowledge. Follow-up experiments show that consumers are more likely to believe experience claims (vs. credence claims) made by other consumers, claims that are supported by data, and longer reviews even if they are not more informative. The authors discuss implications for consumers and credence service providers and possible policy interventions.
|Number of pages||18|
|Journal||Journal of Public Policy and Marketing|
|Early online date||7 Oct 2020|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2021|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This research is based on the dissertation of the first author at the Smith School of Business, University of Maryland. Funding was provided by a National Science Foundation ADVANCE Grant to the second and fourth authors and by the General Research Fund from the Hong Kong Research Grants Council (LU 13501017) and Faculty Research from Lingnan University (DB19A4).
- argument quality
- credence services
- economics of information
- online reviews
- source effects
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- 2 Finished
The Investigation of Consumer-Generated Reviews of Credence Product
CHEN, Y. J.
1/02/19 → 31/01/21
Project: Grant Research
Systematic Biases in Pros-Cons Review: The Role of Sense of Community in Driving Classification Bias Behavior (優缺點式評論存在的系統性偏誤: 社群感受如何造成分類偏誤行為)
CHEN, Y. J., KIRMANI, A. & LI, C.
Research Grants Council (HKSAR)
1/01/18 → 31/12/20
Project: Grant Research