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Indiana University Bloomington

Operations & Decision Technologies

Kelley Advantage

Our Operations, Analytics and Information Systems faculty have written many of the definitive textbooks in the areas of operations, data analysis, database management, networking, and Excel modeling.

Recent Publications

Journal Articles

Beta vs. VHS and the Acceptance of Electronic Brainstorming Technology

2004, Management Info Systems Quarterly

A. R. Dennis, B. Reinicke


This paper argues that much of the past research on electronic brainstorming has been somewhat myopic. Much as Sony focused on the quality of the picture on its Beta format, we as IS researchers have focused on the number of ideas generated as the dominant measure of electronic brainstorming effectiveness. When VHS killed Beta, Sony discovered that image quality was a secondary consideration for most VCR users. Despite the compelling research on its performance benefits, electronic brainstorming has not yet displaced—or even joined—verbal brainstorming as a widely used idea generation technique. This paper presents arguments that users may not be primarily concerned with the number of ideas generated when planning a brainstorming session, but rather may equally desire group well being and member support. We present theoretical arguments and empirical evidence suggesting that electronic brainstorming is not as effective as verbal brainstorming at providing group well being and member support. We believe that these arguments may also apply to other group and individual research areas and may also call for a reevaluation of the technology acceptance model (TAM). Finally, we suggest further research that may help electronic brainstorming avoid the fate of the Beta format.


Dennis, A. R. and B. Reinicke (2004), “Beta vs. VHS and the Acceptance of Electronic Brainstorming Technology,” MIS Quarterly, Vol. 28, No. 1, pp. 1-20.