This paper reports a detailed empirical study of interpersonal trust in a multi-relational online social network. This study addresses two main aspects of interpersonal trust: formation and reciprocation. Computational models developed, using multi-relational networks, for these processes provide interesting insights about online social interactions. Our findings for trust formation (initiation) indicate a strong role of lower familiarity interactions before trust(high familiarity relationship) is formed. Similarly, trust reciprocation is not automatic, but strongly depends on enough lower familiarity interactions. This study is the first quantification of the "scaffolding role" played by lower familiarity interactions, in formation of high familiarity relationships. Extension of prior works by Roy et al.  and Singhal et al. .
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The research was supported by NSF grants IIS-1248269, IIS-1422802, and BBN grant W911NF-09-2-0053.
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- Online trust formation
- Online virtual social networks
- Relationship prediction
- Social interaction