Journalists tend to be a cynical bunch, it comes with the job – ever questioning. As such, they are rather demanding of their sources and the trustworthiness of websites and brands. Research from Indonesia in the International Journal of Web Engineering and Technology describes a model of website user experience that has now been tested on journalists.
Journalists, of course, need to make judgements as to the trustworthiness of a website, especially when seeking information and sources during an investigation. However, they are not the only user group for whom “brand” trust is important, the same applies to people from all walks of life, whether shopping online, studying, making political choices, seeking out entertainment, or other activities.
Purwadi Purwadi of the Research Center for Society and Culture at the National Research and Innovation Agency and Irwansyah Irwansyah of the Faculty of Social Science and Political Science at the Universitas Indonesia, explain how they used partial least square-structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM) for data processing techniques and hypothesis testing on a survey of 300 journalists.
The team found that there was a significant correlation between the user experience, measured by six components and trust in the brand associated with the website. Those six components are site access speed, culture, design, hedonic, public value, usability, user value, and user emotions. Their second model showed that access speed, user value, and user emotion also correlated with brand trust. Of course, perceived trustworthiness based on such variables as page load speed and access times on a website are not necessarily a true reflection of whether or not the given site is trustworthy. A slow site may simply have technical issues that have not been overcome rather than that technical deficit reflecting poor content. That said, a site that does not look after its technical side, as well as its content, may well be a less worthy resource as such a lack of attention to detail in the technical area may reflect a similar lack of attention to content. The team recommends the use of the first model with its greater number of variables for future studies of the website user experience.
Purwadi, P. and Irwansyah, I. (2022) ‘Website user experience model: testing on journalists’, Int. J. Web Engineering and Technology, Vol. 17, No. 1, pp.63–87.