Awardee's Dilemma: Can a Trophy Tame Internet Trolls?

Workshop’s Topic: Can a prestigious award improve a brands online reputation? On the one hand, a prestigious recognition can signal a brands robust quality to consumers, who now perceive its services and/or products in a more positive light. On the other hand, award-winning can also raise consumers expectations and standards for an award-winning brand, making their judgment of it more critical, if not damaging. Using a unique data set consisting of the game performance, popularity, and online fan comments of National Basketball Association (NBA) players, our study provides an answer to the awardees dilemma. We show that being selected as an All-Star player (i.e., award-winning) has positive causal effects on that players online brand image. The award-winning effect not only helps Al-Star players receive positive word-of-mouth (WOM) but also reduces the volume of negative WOM. This positive effect is particularly salient for Internet trolls users who repeatedly post destructive and deceptive comments, suggesting the promise of proactively managing trolling behaviors that create hostile online spaces. After ruling out several confounding mechanisms, we argue that observational learning is the driving force behind our findings. Our results provide implications on online reputation management and firms entry decisions into award competitions.

Time and Location: 14:00-15:30 PM (GMT+8), Room A523 (School of Management)

Language: Bilingual (Chinese and English)

Introduction of Speakers

Prof. LI Xinlong

Nanyang Technological University, Nanyang Business School

Prof. LI Xinlong is an assistant professor of marketing at the Nanyang Business School of Nanyang Technological University. He received his PhD from the Rothmann School of Management at the University of Toronto. His research focuses on the use of structural models and state-of-the-art machine learning techniques to develop quantitative methods to better understand consumer behavior and support business decision making. His main research interests include digital economy, ESG, financial technology and more. His research has been published in Marketing Science, Management Science and Journal of Medical Internet Research. He has served as a special reviewer for Management Science, Journal of Marketing Research and the Research Grants Council, Hong Kong.