Conference Proceedings

You can be too rich: Mediated communication in a virtual world

G Wadley, MR Gibbs, N Ducheneaut

Proceedings of the 21st Annual Conference of the Australian Computer-Human Interaction Special Interest Group - Design: Open 24/7, OZCHI '09 | Published : 2009


Internet-based virtual worlds (VWs) have emerged as a popular form of collaborative virtual environment. Most have offered only text chat for user communication; however several VWs have recently introduced voice. While research has demonstrated benefits of voice, its introduction into the popular VW Second Life (SL) was controversial, and some users have rejected it. In order to understand the benefits and problems that voice brings to virtual worlds, we used qualitative methods to gather data from SL users and analyse it. We discuss our results in the light of media-richness theory and its critiques, arguing that preferences for voice or text reflect a broader problem of managing social pr..

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