- Copyright Page
- List of Contributors
- Volume Introduction
- Cyberpsychology Research Methods
- The Online Self
- Impression Management and Self-Presentation Online
- Personality and Internet Use: The Case of Introversion and Extroversion
- Adolescent and Emerging Adult Perception and Participation in Problematic and Risky Online Behavior
- The Myth of the Digital Native and What It Means for Higher Education
- Technology Interference in Couple and Family Relationships
- Older Adults and Digital Technologies
- Textese: Language in the Online World
- Cultural Considerations on Online Interactions
- Online Romantic Relationships
- The Social Consequences of Online Interaction
- Online Support Communities
- Digital Inclusion for People with an Intellectual Disability
- The Psychology of Online Lurking
- Conceptualizing Online Groups as Multidimensional Networks
- Uses and Gratifications of Social Media: Who Uses It and Why?
- Image Sharing on Social Networking Sites: Who, What, Why, and So What?
- Social Media and Cyberactivism
- Socially Connecting Through Blogs and Vlogs: A Social Connections Approach to Blogging and Vlogging Motivation
- Positive Aspects of Social Media
- Managing Your Health Online: Issues in the Selection, Curation, and Sharing of Digital Health Information
- A Psychological Overview of Gaming Disorder
- Mourning and Memorialization on Social Media
- The Therapeutic and Health Benefits of Playing Video Games
- Video Games and Behavior Change
- Game Transfer Phenomena: Origin, Development, and Contributions to the Video Game Research Field
- Psychosocial Effects of Gaming
- Enacting Immorality Within Gamespace: Where Should We Draw the Line, and Why?
- Gaming Classifications and Player Demographics
- The Rise of Cybercrime
- Policing Cybercrime through Law Enforcement and Industry Mechanisms
- Cybercrime and You: How Criminals Attack and the Human Factors That They Seek to Exploit
- The Group Element of Cybercrime: Types, Dynamics, and Criminal Operations
Abstract and Keywords
In recent years online support communities have increased in popularity and, for those digitally connected, provide a convenient and accessible means of reaching out to others facing similar health-related challenges. This chapter considers online support communities in terms of their popularity and the unique characteristics arising from the computer-mediated nature of the communication platform. It discusses both the range of possible benefits and problems to members. It presents a summary of evidence describing who engages with online support communities and why. It pays particular attention to describing what community members talk about online as well as patterns of communication in terms of therapeutic processes. Since the study of online support communities spans several disciplinary fields, the chapter also presents a selection of popular theoretical frameworks used by researchers. Finally, it concludes with a discussion of the outcomes arising from engagement with online support.
Neil S. Coulson, Division of Rehabilitation & Ageing, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham, UK
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