My kind of people?: perceptions about Wikipedia contributors and their motivations

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My kind of people?: perceptions about Wikipedia contributors and their motivations
Authors: Judd David Antin [edit item]
Citation: CHI '11 Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems  : 3411-3420. 2011 05 2011-05-07. Vancouver, BC, Canada. ACM.
Publication type: Conference paper
Peer-reviewed: Yes
Database(s):
DOI: 10.1145/1978942.1979451.
Google Scholar cites: Citations
Link(s): Paper link
Added by Wikilit team: Yes
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My kind of people?: perceptions about Wikipedia contributors and their motivations is a publication by Judd David Antin.


[edit] Abstract

Perceptions of information products such as Wikipedia can depend on assumptions and stereotypes about the people who create them. As new Wikipedians consider contributing they are likely to apply such assumptions and ask themselves: "Are Wikipedia contributors my kind of people? Is this a group I'd like to belong to?" In this qualitative study I address the potential challenge of these questions by exploring readers and infrequent editors' perceptions of Wikipedia contributors and their motivations. Through analysis of twenty semi-structured interviews, I find evidence of strong negative perceptions as well as positive ones which nonetheless prevent users from identifying with active Wikipedia contributors. I argue that these perceptions present a barrier to the progression of participation over time. I conclude by discussing the practical challenges of my findings for Wikipedia and other online collaborative systems.

[edit] Research questions

"[What are] "perceptions about Wikipedia’s contributors among readers and infrequent editors"?"

Research details

Topics: Contributor motivation, Community building [edit item]
Domains: Computer science, Information systems [edit item]
Theory type: Analysis [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Main topic [edit item]
Theories: "Hacker ethic by Himanen" [edit item]
Research design: Case study [edit item]
Data source: Interview responses [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: Cross-sectional [edit item]
Unit of analysis: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia language: Not specified [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

""In this study I have focused attention on potential contributors’ assumptions about active contributors. These assumptions, I have argued, can constrain or enable users from progressing to richer forms of participation. My results constitute evidence that at least some potential contributors tell themselves “active contributors are not my kind of people.” Whether positive (the Hacker Ethic) or negative (the Wikipedia “geek” stereotype), most of my participants concluded that they either could not identify as an active contributor or would not want to. However, much future research remains. This study has focused on a deep exploration of meaning in an interview setting. The consistent repetition of ideas and themes within my sample lends weight to the results. However, future research should establish representativeness beyond my sample and beyond Wikipedia. Having identified some potentially problematic stereotypes, survey research in particular would help determine how widespread such stereotypes might be. Armed with this information, Wikipedia could design an informed strategy for cultivating new users over time, reinvigorating its user base and drawing in a more diverse array of invested users. Furthermore, understanding the kinds of stories people tell themselves about their own place in complex collaborative communities will improve our ability to design and maintain sustainable online collaboration." (p. 3419)"

[edit] Comments

"This paper is related to Antin's doctoral thesis, that is also included in Wikilit"


Further notes[edit]

Facts about "My kind of people?: perceptions about Wikipedia contributors and their motivations"RDF feed
AbstractPerceptions of information products such aPerceptions of information products such as Wikipedia can depend on assumptions and stereotypes about the people who create them. As new Wikipedians consider contributing they are likely to apply such assumptions and ask themselves: "Are Wikipedia contributors my kind of people? Is this a group I'd like to belong to?" In this qualitative study I address the potential challenge of these questions by exploring readers and infrequent editors' perceptions of Wikipedia contributors and their motivations. Through analysis of twenty semi-structured interviews, I find evidence of strong negative perceptions as well as positive ones which nonetheless prevent users from identifying with active Wikipedia contributors. I argue that these perceptions present a barrier to the progression of participation over time. I conclude by discussing the practical challenges of my findings for Wikipedia and other online collaborative systems.ia and other online collaborative systems.
Added by wikilit teamYes +
Collected data time dimensionCross-sectional +
CommentsThis paper is related to Antin's doctoral thesis, that is also included in Wikilit
Conclusion"In this study I have focused attention on"In this study I have focused attention on potential contributors’ assumptions about active contributors. These assumptions, I have argued, can constrain or enable users from progressing to richer forms of participation. My results constitute evidence that at least some potential contributors tell themselves “active contributors are not my kind of people.” Whether positive (the Hacker Ethic) or negative (the Wikipedia “geek” stereotype), most of my participants concluded that they either could not identify as an active contributor or would not want to. However, much future research remains. This study has focused on a deep exploration of meaning in an interview setting. The consistent repetition of ideas and themes within my sample lends weight to the results. However, future research should establish representativeness beyond my sample and beyond Wikipedia. Having identified some potentially problematic stereotypes, survey research in particular would help determine how widespread such stereotypes might be. Armed with this information, Wikipedia could design an informed strategy for cultivating new users over time, reinvigorating its user base and drawing in a more diverse array of invested users. Furthermore, understanding the kinds of stories people tell themselves about their own place in complex collaborative communities will improve our ability to design and maintain sustainable online collaboration." (p. 3419)stainable online collaboration." (p. 3419)
Conference locationVancouver, BC, Canada +
Data sourceInterview responses +
Dates2011-05-07 +
Doi10.1145/1978942.1979451 +
Google scholar urlhttp://scholar.google.com/scholar?ie=UTF-8&q=%22My%2Bkind%2Bof%2Bpeople%3F%3A%2Bperceptions%2Babout%2BWikipedia%2Bcontributors%2Band%2Btheir%2Bmotivations%22 +
Has authorJudd David Antin +
Has domainComputer science + and Information systems +
Has topicContributor motivation + and Community building +
Month05 +
Pages3411-3420 +
Peer reviewedYes +
Publication typeConference paper +
Published inCHI '11 Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems +
PublisherACM +
Research designCase study +
Research questions[What are] "perceptions about Wikipedia’s contributors among readers and infrequent editors"?
Revid10,879 +
TheoriesHacker ethic by Himanen
Theory typeAnalysis +
TitleMy kind of people?: perceptions about Wikipedia contributors and their motivations
Unit of analysisN/A +
Urlhttp://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=1215943 +
Wikipedia coverageMain topic +
Wikipedia data extractionN/A +
Wikipedia languageNot specified +
Wikipedia page typeN/A +
Year2011 +