Can visualization of contributions support fairness in collaboration? Findings from meters in an online game

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Abstract

In this paper we consider how visualizations might support judgements about fairness in collaborative work. We present a qualitative investigation of meters, existing artefacts that enable awareness of contributions in the online game World of Warcraft. Through in-depth interviews with game players, we draw attention to the value of meters as tools for self-reflection and group evaluation. Yet we also describe problematic consequences that arise as a result of meters, distinguishing their usage as in-the-moment awareness tools from instruments used after the fact to apportion credit and blame. We argue that representations like meters may be enough to provoke initial questions about fairness, but are likely to undermine the efforts of collaborators if they fail to combine a set of indices that reflect important aspects of individual work in the context of team activity. We consider broader lessons for the way in which future designs might aim to support fairness in collaborative systems, pointing to multidimensional mechanisms adapted specifically to real-time or retrospective usage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages664-678
Number of pages15
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2016
EventThe 19th ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing - California, San Francisco, USA United States
Duration: 27 Feb 20163 Mar 2016

Conference

ConferenceThe 19th ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing
CountryUSA United States
CitySan Francisco
Period27/02/163/03/16

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    Kelly, R., Watts, L., & Payne, S. (2016). Can visualization of contributions support fairness in collaboration? Findings from meters in an online game. 664-678. Paper presented at The 19th ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, San Francisco, USA United States. https://doi.org/10.1145/2818048.2819977, https://doi.org/10.1145/2818048.2819977