At any given time, the stability of a community depends on the right balance of trust and distrust. Furthermore, we face information overload, increased uncertainty and risk taking as a prominent feature of modern living. As members of society, we cope with these complexities and uncertainties by relying trust, which is the basis of all social interactions. Although a small number of trust models have been proposed for the virtual medium, we find that they are largely impractical and artificial. In this paper we provide and discuss a trust model that is grounded in real-world social trust characteristics, and based on a reputation mechanism, or word-of-mouth. Our proposed model allows agents to decide which other agents' opinions they trust more and allows agents to progressively tune their understanding of another agent's subjective recommendations.
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