Dynamics of Virtual Work

ComMODify

User Creativity at the Intersection of Commerce and Community

Authors: Van Der Graaf, Shenja

  • Provides empirical analyses of user design capabilities within the online virtual world Second Life
  • Uses game modding as a conceptual focus
  • Investigates the 'participatory turn' of digital technologies
see more benefits

Buy this book

eBook £52.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 1, 2017
  • ISBN 978-3-319-61500-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format:
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover £66.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 1, 2017
  • ISBN 978-3-319-61499-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
About this book

This book critically analyses user-firm technology relationships and socioeconomic structures at the crossroads of community and commerce. It investigates businesses that let users participate in platform development on the internet. An empirical study of the online world Second Life is used as an early illustration of the pivotal role of user participation in design, development and sustainability of digital platforms.

Van der Graaf sheds light on aspects of the ongoing platformization of the internet and on new norms and mechanisms for user participation which are linked to values of creativity, community and labour. ComMODify makes clear that robust theoretical and empirical investigation of the integration of user participation into mainstream business models and its implications for platform development is key to understanding contemporary businesses like Facebook, that sustain the internet of today.

This book will be of interest to those wanting to learn more about the socio-economic implications of user participation associated with user-generated content, particularly within the 3D software and game industry.

About the authors

Shenja van der Graaf is a Senior Researcher at imec-SMIT, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium.

Reviews

“This unique study shows us the complexity of game designer business models in highly competitive online game markets where companies succeed by retaining elements of control over the value creation process, even as they open their sites to collaboration and sharing.” (Robin Mansell, London School of Economics, UK)

“This book makes a very important contribution to understanding digital culture. When an online game designer invites its customers onto its site, participants are offered empowering opportunities to become creative content co-creators. This study gives us deep insight into the barriers users face when they engage in modding in commercial virtual worlds, how they learn, and what companies do to entice user participation. This unique study shows us the complexity of game designer business models in highly competitive online game markets where companies succeed by retaining elements of control over the value creation process, even as they open their sites to collaboration and sharing.” (Robin Mansell, London School of Economics, UK)

“The book gives an original, critical and timely perspective on the socio-technical (co)design of games/3D software platforms. The uniqueness lies in the integration of an in-depth analysis of technological artefacts (toolkits, engines and interfaces) with user practices of ‘modding’ and the socio-economic context. The combined qualitative and quantitative research nicely dissects the intricate interdependence and dynamic between developer companies and mod developers, while indicating implications for firm-user learning opportunities and the dialectics of community and commerce. This is a must-read for anyone with a keen interest in the transformative potential of user participation that goes beyond typical celebrative thinking.” (Jo Pierson, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (imec-SMIT), Belgium)

“Today’s platform cultures defy inherited analytic categories and thrive in a thicket of neologisms. Shenja van der Graaf adeptly and empirically takes on this sometimes fraught and always dynamic space by exploring the world of game modding.  Her penetrating analysis of the people, tools, and participatory dynamics of this complex ecosystem ultimately yields a vivid portrait of emerging forms of governance, and with it, insights into the pas de deux between social relations and economic production.” (William Uricchio, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)

“The ubiquity of user-created content on today’s leading digital platforms is largely considered as an instance of democratization. While it is undeniably true that users have greater access to the means of cultural production, how user participation is integrated and understood in the industry workplace is less clear. This in-depth study of the work of ‘modders’ of games and virtual worlds is highly instructive for surveying the blurring of boundaries among actors, genres, user and firm practices and relationships. In her contribution to our understanding of the ‘participatory turn’, Van der Graaf draws on exciting empirical data to challenge the assumptions about the seemingly straightforward relationship between users and firms.” (David Nieborg, University of Toronto, Canada)

Buy this book

eBook £52.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 1, 2017
  • ISBN 978-3-319-61500-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format:
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover £66.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • Due: November 1, 2017
  • ISBN 978-3-319-61499-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
Loading...

Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
ComMODify
Book Subtitle
User Creativity at the Intersection of Commerce and Community
Authors
Series Title
Dynamics of Virtual Work
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-61500-4
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-61500-4
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-61499-1
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIII, 182
Number of Illustrations and Tables
2 b/w illustrations, 7 illustrations in colour
Topics