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Designing for (Local) Community
 

Designing for (Local) Community

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A review of literature and technology to provide guidelines for designing online communities with an emphasis on local communities and neighborhoods.

A review of literature and technology to provide guidelines for designing online communities with an emphasis on local communities and neighborhoods.

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    Designing for (Local) Community Designing for (Local) Community Presentation Transcript

    • Designing for (Local) Online Community Shelly Farnham, Ph.D. 2008
    • Community Defined
      • "I define "community" as networks of interpersonal ties that provide sociability, support, information, a sense of belonging, and social identity.”
              • Barry Wellman (2001).
      • “ A group of people who share a common interest or purpose; who have the ability to get to know each other better over time. There are two pieces to that definition. That second piece — getting to know each other better over time — means that there needs to be some mechanism of identity and communication.”
      • Amy Jo Kim (2001)
        • “ 1) It is interactive and built on the concept of many-to-many communications ...;
        • 2) It is designed to attract and retain community members who become more than superficially involved in community events ... and ... are able to make new friends through the community;
        • 3) It has a single defining focus; ... (that) gives them a reason to return;
        • 4) It provides services to community members, ... that meet community member needs;
        • 5) It has, or has the potential to develop, a strong commercial element...“
          • From "Towntalk ," a listserv on online community
    • Socio-Cultural Context
      • Social dissolution/individualism, lack of traditional community
        • Bob Putnam, “Bowling Alone”
      • Neo-tribalism, “Urban Tribes”
      • Use of Internet to access people, coordinate
    • Penetration of Online Communities
      • 84% of Internet users in U.S. participated in an online community (Pew 2001)
      • Of these
        • 79% regularly with one particular group
        • 49% help connect with groups with shared interest
        • 26% to contact or learn about local groups (28 million)
      • 16% use a social networking site (Pew 2006)
      • 39% looked for a home (Pew 2006)
      • 77% of home buyers used Internet (NAR 2005)
    • Why Community Online?
      • Geographical isolation/distance
      • Limited mobility
      • Weak ties, access to specialized knowledge or circumstances
        • Need sense of shared understanding/frustration
        • Similar others hard to find face to face
      • Asynchronous interaction
        • Face to face not available all the time, hard to meet
        • Continuous access to support
          • People who are available face to face bored with your preoccupation
      • Overcome social stigmatization
      anyone, anytime, anyplace
    • Glocalization
      • Barry Wellman
        • Help find others with similar interests no matter the distance
        • Increase contact with groups and people already know, feel more connected
    • What are people using discussion groups for?
      • 2001 MSN Communities Analysis
      Sample of 20K communites with more than 1 member.
    • How does type of group impact measures of community health?
      • 2001 MSN Communities Analysis
      Religious and social support communities especially interactive.
    • Online Support Communities
      • Decrease worry, anxiety, depression
      • Information flow, exchange, storytelling
      • Group problem solving, insights
      • Trusted sources
      • Common social support topic: health
        • Advice from peers with health experience
        • Improve patient compliance with treatment
        • Info seeking improve decision-making
          • go to doctor able to talk intelligently about problems, have language for it etc.
          • assess quality of their care
        • Messages primarily informational vs. emotional?
        • giving info (33.5%),
        • opinions (17.4%),
        • suggestions (7.3%),
        • Socio-emotional (25.8%)
        • From Maloney-Krichmar & Preece, In Kneeboard
    • HutchWorld
        • Provided Internet access and community support software to patients and caregivers following BMT
        • #1 reason people used Internet was to interact with family and friends, not to meet other cancer patients/caregivers
        • Access to Internet had buffer effect on feelings of loss of social support/life satisfaction following BMT
          • “ It kept us connected on a daily basis to friends and family
          • which was extremely important.”
          • “ It gave me the feeling that I could connect with the outside
          • world. Cancer is very isolating and the computer broke that isolation.”
    • Defining Elements of Online
      • Distinctive Focus
      • Integrating content and communication
      • Appreciation for member-generated content
      • Access to competing publishers/vendors
        • (putting needs of community ahead of business)
      • Sustainable
      Figallo
    • Attributes of Online Community
      • Feel a part of larger whole
        • Importance of tapping into identity effects
      • Web of relationships
      • Ongoing exchange
      • Relationships last through time
    • Communities as Intervention
      • The minimal “intervention”:
        • Define community boundaries
          • Tapping into personal identity, social identity
        • Enable conversation
      • Assessment:
        • Measure community growth, participation
        • Impact on neighborhood
    • Designing for Sociability
        • Clearly articulated shared purpose
        • Governance, protocols
          • Spell out ground rules for appropriate behavior
          • Enforce
            • Users good at self-regulation if have tools
            • Blocking, ignoring, three strikes your out
            • Contact for escalation
          • Evolve
        • Ritual
          • Welcome!
          • You’ve been promoted/you get an award!
    • Designing for Sociability
        • People
          • Profiles
          • Roles
            • Moderators
            • Experts
            • Lurkers
            • Approx 1% leaders, 19% participate, 80% lurkers
          • Size
            • Critical mass: number of people needed to make a community useful
            • Too few not enough, too many overwhelmed
            • Discussion groups: 25 active participants take up all the air
            • Plan for emergence of subgroups when it gets too large
    • Designing for Sociability
      • Group vs. network form of association
        • Sense of boundary, you are a member or not, better many to many communicaiton
      • Need for active communication
        • Message board/mailing list
        • Commenting
        • Possible to shift from broadcast to one on one, public to private
      • Narrow focus vs. broad
        • Tend to succeed with dense groups of similar others
      • A sense of place: where do I go to find us?
        • Orient people around central home page type location (FAQ/wiki/discussion board for each neighborhood)
      • Light moderation/hosting of spaces, enable emerging leaders
    • Designing for Sociability
      • Enabling transition from newbie to mentor
        • Passing on “host” role
        • Awareness of newbie/mentor roles through activity metrics
          • Time in space
          • Message activity
          • # of stories/lessons posted
    • Importance of First Impressions
      • Need to see there is social interaction (social translucence)
        • exchange/reciprocity shows interpersonal trust
        • Shadows of social behavior: X members, amount recent activity, new story posts, best story
      • Site trust building:
        • Post self-regulating policies
          • Privacy and security
          • Editorial and advertising
        • Source disclosure
        • Third party seal
        • Branding
    • Integration with Email!
        • Importance of email to communities
          • 91% of people email
        • Of those who connect to groups online
        • 60% through email
        • 33% email main local organization several times a week
      Pew 2001
    • Discovery/Entry Points
      • Search in system by topic and by person: important to find similar others
        • Search/show relevant demo factors (SES indicators through job, college, location)
        • Related interests
      • Entry through invitation to join
        • Invite friends/family/cohorts to view stories etc.
      • Link off of other community sites
    • Online Community General Concerns
      • Access
      • Ease of use
      • Authentication/accountability
      • Commercialism and privacy
      • Safety and security
        • Bad behavior in online spaces
        • Misappropriation of personal info
      • Misinformation
    • Fostering cooperation
      • Social dilemma/tragedy of the commons
        • Individual gain vs. collective good
      • Increasing cooperation
        • Reputation
          • Will meet again
          • Identification of behavior
          • Record of past behavior
        • Media richness (social presence theory)
    • Social Presence Theory
      • How successfully media convey sense of others being physically present (also, Media Richness Theory)
      • Increase social presence with
        • Verbal
        • Visual, non-verbals, body language, SES
        • Context (physical, social)
      • Impacts
        • sense of emotion, intimacy, immediacy
        • Development of common ground
          • Achieving shared understanding
          • Infer meaning from context
        • Activation of pro-social norms
          • Lack of social presence, increased aggression, decreased trust
    • Reputation Systems Online
      • Online interactions outside usual social constraints (disembodied)
        • Identified behavior
        • History of behavior over time
        • Social context: face-to-face increases normative behavior
      • People *will* break trust if not held accountable/ prosocial norms not activated by presence of others
      • Reputation
        • History of past interactions informs current expectation of reciprocity or retaliation in future
        • Accountability, trust
    • Reputation Systems -- Key Components
      • Long-lived entities that inspire expectation of future interaction
      • Capture and distribution of feedback about current interactions
      • Use of feedback to guide trust decisions
      • Issues:
        • Low incentive to provide feedback
        • People reluctant to provide negative feedback
        • Ensuring honest reports
    • Types of Ratings
      • Implicit Ranking
        • Time in system, frequency of visits, frequency of posts, etc
      • Explicit Rating
        • Weighted average, explicit rating of object of interest
      • Collaborative filtering
        • People with similar rating patterns rate this highly, so you will probably like
        • Assumes high variability in preferences
      • Peer-based
        • Filter implicit/explicit ratings by relevance to self in network (e.g. friend of friend)
    • Importance of Types of Reputation Information From Jensen et. al 2002, N = ~330 Decision task: Study of use of reputation information to inform choice about whom to interact with
    • Importance of Types of Reputation Information From Jensen et. al 2002
    • Ebay
    • Slashdot
    • Netscan
    • Netscan
    • Netscan
    • Netscan
      • Behavior of active users in Netscan (top 10%), from Brush et al. 2005
    • WholeNote
    • Wholenote Ratings
    • Reputation System Design Implications
      • Filter both content and reputation metrics by relevance to self -- emphasizing similarity
        • Often reduced overall average ratings the more information is exposed (voice, picture, profile information): indication of increased discrimination between good/bad, relevant content
      • Include both implicit and explicit ratings/rankings
      • Expect explicit ratings to be positively biased, so “absence of positive” matters
        • Ratings per hit rate for example meaningful
        • Count of ratings overall
        • Binary votes: e.g. “useful” or not
      • Metrics at both level of content and level of author important
      • Rate comments as well as content
    • Reputation System Design Implications
      • Assessing a person’s/story’s reputation with “others like me” – localized reputation
      • Under the hood assessment of “trustability” of raters, use to influence their influence on aggregate scores, search results
        • Recency in system, deviance, claimed home, explicit ratings (ratings of raters)
      • Use interaction history with content to normalize ratings
        • % of positive ratings out of # of people read/hit vs. simple average
      • Search results, able to change sort by:
        • Overall ranking/ratings
        • Ranking/rating in my network
        • Similarity/relevance to me
        • Date updated/posted
        • Author
    • People Access Local/Neighborhood Communities Online?
      • 41% often/sometimes go online for info about local stores/merchants
      • 35% often/sometimes for news about local community/community events
      • 24% often/sometimes to get info about local schools
      Pew 2001
    • Local Communities Online?
      • % of Internet % who
      • Users belong to: email:
      • Church, synagogue, mosque 44% 43%
      • Social club or charitable organization 30% 56%
      • Community group/neighborhood association 22% 52%
      • Youth group 22% 43%
      • Sports 20% 38%
      • Other 14% 51%
      Pew 1991
    • Netville study: what did they talk about?
      • Discuss interests of common concern (home construction)
      • Requests for help or advise (e.g. recommendation for a local doctor)
      • Advertise garage sales, local crafts/services
      • Invitations to community events
      • Messages offering such things as job info
      • Home renovation
      • “ flavor”
      • Streets
      • Art
      • Bars/restaurants
      • Shopping
      • Blogs
      • Crime
      • Politics
      • Community
      • New
      • Events
      • “ talk
      • view
      • Live”
    •  
      • Personalization look and feel
      • Crime feeds
      • Places with drink deals
      • People
      • Stats:
        • Demographics
        • Schools
        • Crime
        • Economy
        • Health
        • Weather
      • Cost of living
      • apt
      • ratings
      • Map overlay
      • Pick and choose
    •  
      • Neighborhood meetup
      • classifieds
      • photos
      • boundaries
      • Places people like
      • Recommendations
      • Recommendations
      • Activity in network
      • Activity in blog network
      • People
      • Discussion,
      • Photos,
      • Listings,
      • Events,
      • Reviews,
      • Requests
      • Related Groups
    • Conclusions/discussion
      • Defining primary target users and their common purpose #1 task of any community tool
      • Group boundaries (location/neighborhood)
        • Emphasis! Identification with neighborhood
        • Opportunities to meet
        • Community language: Join, Welcome, Member!
      • Communication features
      • Foster emergence of leaders (reputation metrics, most active/featured member slot)
      • Seed content, model communities, model neighborhoods