Characteristics and Usage Patterns of Older People in a 3D Online Multi-User Virtual Environment

Siriaraya, Panote and Ang, Chee Siang (2012) Characteristics and Usage Patterns of Older People in a 3D Online Multi-User Virtual Environment. Computers in Human Behavior, 28 (5). pp. 1873-1882. ISSN 0747-5632. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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3D online multi-user virtual environments (MUVEs) have a lot of potential in supporting older people in their daily lives, yet little research has been conducted to explore how older people engage with this type of technology. This paper aims to investigate the characteristics, user groups and activity patterns (particularly social networks and gift giving behaviour) of older users within a 3D online multi-user virtual environment. Data from approximately 5000 online user profiles of older and younger users from a 3D MUVE, namely IMVU, was collected for analysis. Overall, we identified several distinct patterns of use (e.g. size of social ties, level of reciprocity, etc.) among older users when compared with younger users. We also found that despite the capabilities of 3D MUVEs to provide the users immersion in alternative realities, a feature well embraced by younger users in this study, older users seemed more interested in activities which serve as an extension to their physical life.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: Older people; Virtual communities; Multi-user virtual environment; Social interaction
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics (inc Computing science) > QA 76 Software, computer programming, > QA76.9.H85 Human computer interaction
Divisions: Faculties > Science Technology and Medical Studies > School of Engineering and Digital Arts > Instrumentation, Control and Embedded Systems
Depositing User: J. Harries
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2012 14:42
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2014 08:44
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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