#geowebchat transcript, 16 August 2011


@peterajohnson Welcome everyone to another #geowebchat hour! Today we are talking about participation in the Geoweb/VGI. Tue Aug 16 18:00:44 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson Participation is essential to the Geoweb. But what happens when valued contributors leave? Can participation be sustained? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:01:21 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson The recent talk of Wikipedia losing contributors got me thinking about participation – is there a shelf life to participation? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:03:29 +0000 2011

@joeeckert Checking into #geowebchat. Hi, gang! Tue Aug 16 18:03:34 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson #geowebchat I think it depends on the project, does this question imply that not all contributors are valued? Tue Aug 16 18:04:09 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson #geowebchat I hope that did not sound sarky Tue Aug 16 18:04:35 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson — could you share those links one more time? particularly the slashdot re: wikipedia? now w/#geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:04:37 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 hi everyone! it seems, on a superficial level, that we’re wondering if geoweb is a trend or a sustained social movement? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:05:11 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson Wikipedia losing contributors: http://t.co/FCPfOv0 #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:05:32 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson there’s evidence from non-technical arenas that expectation causes burnout. herbert’s “trapdoor of community” #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:06:08 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 i mean, given that wikipedia is losing contribs… seems it might be due partly to it losing “wow-value” #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:06:10 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @bricker well, not all contributions are equal, so yes, I’m sure that some Geoweb sites wouldn’t mind fewer contributors #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:06:45 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson “@strawberrycough: “moves to other ventures.” ones with a paycheck attached. how long can you expect people to work for free?” #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:07:42 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 once everyone is doing it, it loses some cachet? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:09:03 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson oh? what makes some contributions more valuable than others? and by what criteria? and whose value? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:09:49 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson one of the comments was thought provoking — the “magic 95%” as a barrier to participation. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:10:53 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert w/OSM contributing errors is still contributing. Just requires clean up. #geowebchat but yeah, its a judgement call re:errors Tue Aug 16 18:12:09 +0000 2011

@joeeckert think the “magic 95%” is an epistemological issue, particularly for the geoweb. limited to cartesian, there’s only so many trees #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:12:16 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson @joeeckert #geowebchat errors and relevance? I have seen some spam and just off topic contributions as well Tue Aug 16 18:13:26 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson but an appeal to accuracy is only one criteria of value. this might be where vgi departs from PPGIS. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:13:36 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson which in fact could hamper participation from those afraid of “doing it wrong”. seen that in many mapping parties #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:14:17 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @bricker is max participation the goal, or is quality contributions from the ‘right’ audience the goal? Depends, of course. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:14:57 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert Yes! Contributors are valuable and need to be ‘cultivated’ and ‘maintained’. Seen this in all types of vol. groups #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:16:33 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson yup – depends on particular context. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:16:37 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @bricker spam/off-topic/vandalism is an issue, but less than wikipedia for #osm more worried about deification of accuracy #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:17:08 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson cultivated & maintained? by whom? this seems to benefit only one particular sort of user: those with v. capital #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:18:59 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson so, how long CAN we expect people to work for free? Especially once Geoweb isn’t shiny new toy? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:19:22 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson people maintain their own hobbies “for free” constantly. how long before this is no longer “fun” to users? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:20:50 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert not at all – comm groups spend a LOT of time maintaining and cultivating vols. Just takes time, personal interest #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:20:53 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson good q., but again it really depends on context. 4sq? until the next cool thing comes. OSM? very different #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:20:58 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert man, my hobbies actually cost ME money. I’d love one that was free! #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:21:34 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson @joeeckert #geowebchat I think personal interest is key, people are only going to contribute when they care Tue Aug 16 18:22:00 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert but you are right, fun and reward change over time for contributors, so having x ways to ‘pay’ them matters. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:22:52 +0000 2011

@bricker @burnsr77 @peterajohnson #geowebchat in terms of gaming people need achievable goals, 4sq offers rewards=coupons&badges Tue Aug 16 18:23:21 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson true. and no hobby is ever “free” if you believe time has value. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:23:25 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson @joeeckert #geowebchat I <3 gamification! Tue Aug 16 18:23:40 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert well, time is the one thing that we will all run out of, so yes, there is value in it! #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:23:59 +0000 2011

@joeeckert i also think our #geowebchat is rather #osm centric. consider waze’s “contributions”. larger $$$ forces at play here. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:25:09 +0000 2011

@joeeckert </3 gamification (sorry). reduction of what I would hope would be thoughtful practice down to behavioral feedback loops #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:25:57 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson participants could want $, games, status, intrinsic reward, + more (all?) from Geoweb. Aren’t some of these mutually exclusive? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:26:59 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 every app i open on my iPhone asks to use my location. just throwin that out there. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:27:09 +0000 2011

@joeeckert or compare the contrib. of #geocommons vs. #osm. again, the playing field for contributors is diff. code shapes participation #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:28:08 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 so you participate and get to use app as a reward? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:28:59 +0000 2011

@bricker @joeeckert #geowebchat not just code, UI even more so Tue Aug 16 18:29:10 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @bricker certainly both are very influential in shaping contributions. i’m thinking about how code/UI/software shapes behavior #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:30:15 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert and developers/companies shape code…#geowebchat Let’s not give code its own agency here. #osm and #geocommons diff goals Tue Aug 16 18:30:21 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson hmm, is the reward the usage? probably on some level, but like @bricker pointed out 4sq for instance gives badges #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:31:03 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 badges & points #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:31:13 +0000 2011

@bricker @burnsr77 #geowebchat I am interested in the same however I am interested in how it shapes learning and knowledge formation Tue Aug 16 18:32:36 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson re:developers, understand why u say that; but 1 reason code/software is so powerful is bc it is *given* agency #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:32:47 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 but by giving location, you are participating (passively). And the reward is inclusion in group (4sq, for instance). #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:32:56 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 not to open that can of worms #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:33:17 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson that’s a whole rabbit hole to delve down, but I disagree — automated code does work within the world. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:33:45 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 hah, yeah, I’d like to take that tweet back if I could – too much to cover 140 chars at a time #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:34:14 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson lol, no worries ;P #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:35:09 +0000 2011
#geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:36:12 +0000 2011


@joeeckert @peterajohnson @burns77 rotfl. couldn’t agree more. #geowebchat

@peterajohnson surprised we haven’t gotten to what participation actually is – passive vs. active. Do you have to click to participate? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:37:17 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson but the implied point that developers have a disproportionate amount of control over community well recieved #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:37:34 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @joeeckert excellent…maybe a topic for future #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:38:51 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson but I’d probably extend that again to the people employing the developers and attendant webs of capital #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:38:58 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson the ethical implications for that q are rich #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:40:35 +0000 2011

@joeeckert @peterajohnson certainly don’t need to click to “contribute” — participate? depends on definition of that term. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:42:11 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 Is clicking registering your e-presence? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:42:58 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson i.e., under what conditions is passive data generated? under what conditions are clicks made necessary, etc? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:44:10 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 don’t know if that makes sense #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:44:23 +0000 2011

@bricker @burnsr77 @peterajohnson #geowebchat there are lots of conditions when passive data is generated. Tue Aug 16 18:46:26 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson @bricker re:e-registering, we talking about 4sq? other sites might depend on the e-registering to operate #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:47:29 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 if a twitter feed is scraped and used to locate protest location did the tweeters participate in that surveillance? #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:47:38 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson that is a great question to ask. dissertation anyone? ;) #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:48:30 +0000 2011

@bricker @burnsr77 @peterajohnson #geowebchat what if you forget you e-registered? ex. iPhone photos that are geotagged Tue Aug 16 18:49:34 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 i think many of these questions we’re asking really deserve some critical, nuanced discussion. there’s a huge need for us. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:49:46 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 I guess one underlying Q is how participation can be affected by unauthorized/unanticipated use of your contribution#geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:50:44 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 I guess one underlying Q is how participation can be affected by unauthorized/unanticipated use of your contribution #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:53:13 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 well, I think that picking some good examples and developing case study research is an important direction #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:54:38 +0000 2011

@bricker @peterajohnson Thanks for leading this Pete! gotta skip out early. Excellent #geowebchat all! ciao. Tue Aug 16 18:55:56 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 and talking to actual participants and developers to see how things play out in the real world #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:56:23 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson Nama Budhathoki writes about #osm community and participation in his thesis. http://t.co/5bcdVyX #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:58:35 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson sorry, confused… i meant to say that most of these questions have no simple yes/no answer, rather must be… #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:58:41 +0000 2011

@burnsr77 @peterajohnson …and engaged, nuanced across diff platforms and contexts #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 18:59:07 +0000 2011

@peterajohnson @burnsr77 @joeeckert @bricker thanks everyone for a good chat – definitely lots of future directions laid out. See you next week #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 19:01:19 +0000 2011

@joeeckert see you next week, @peterajohnson! @burns77 and I will be hosting up the next one in @mappingmashup ‘s absence. #geowebchat Tue Aug 16 19:02:16 +0000 2011

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