Taking Real-life to Cyberspace: Determining Factors Influencing Virtual Homophily among Members of Faith Communities on online Social Networks

Jacob Dankasa
2016 IOSR Journal of Humanities and Social Science  
Research on how members of faith communities interact on online social networks and the factors that influence their computer-mediated communication are lacking. This study applies the concept of homophily to investigate the factors that encourage the development of relationship ties among members of faith communities on online social network sites such as Facebook. A survey was conducted with 210 members of Catholic faith communities on Facebook. Findings revealed that active involvement with
more » ... e involvement with a real-life faith community predicts increased relationships and interaction among members on online social networks. Active involvement was found to be a major factor influencing virtual religious homophily. The findings support the notion that online social behavior reflects offline behavior. The study has several implications for the use of social media by religious organizations for building an online community of faith as an extension of the real-life church community.
doi:10.9790/0837-2108103948 fatcat:ag7jbscfhvd5njxuripgpngdta