Is There a Link between Offline Behavior and Online Donations?

Anja Eller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Solidarity websites, such as The Hunger Site, where people can donate food at no financial cost and minimal effort, have become immensely popular and effective since 1999. These new forms of philanthropy are characterized by wide participation and direct assistance and feedback. The present longitudinal, quasi-experimental study aimed to examine whether online solidarity can be predicted by offline contact with, attitudes about, and altruistic behavior tendencies towards a population in need, asylum seekers. Fifty-seven university students completed two surveys, separated by 1 year. Prior to T1, only 9% of respondents had visited solidarity websites, while at T2 47% reported clicking. Multiple regression analysis showed that T2 visits to solidarity websites were ( negatively) predicted by T1 quantity of contact, and marginally, by T1 general evaluation of asylum seekers. These long-term, offline-to-online effects are intriguing, although there were no effects of offline contact quality and altruistic behavior tendencies. Future research should further investigate the causal direction between offline and online behavior and the factors that might influence the link between offline and online attitudes and behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)611-613
Number of pages3
JournalCyberPsychology and Behavior
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008




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