Search results

1 – 10 of over 1000
Book part
Publication date: 5 April 2019

Anthony J. O’Tierney, Donncha Kavanagh and Kevin Scally

In this chapter, the authors explore the concept of actorial identity through analysing the construction of legal persons as actors, centred on the argument that there is…

Abstract

In this chapter, the authors explore the concept of actorial identity through analysing the construction of legal persons as actors, centred on the argument that there is an ontological separation between living men and women and their legal representations. The authors propose an analytical frame based in part on the games studies literature, wherein actorial identities known as ‘Avatars’ are created by performative declarations that articulate Avatars with Players (living persons). The Avatars act within a bounded ‘Matrix’ while being controlled by Players who are outside the Matrix. In applying the frame to the legal Matrix, the authors distinguish between living persons, natural persons and artificial persons, and introduce the concepts of first-order and second-order Avatars. The authors then employ the analytical frame to model the use of legal Avatars by Apple Inc. and illustrate how cryptocurrency technology enables the creation of Avatars that can transact outside legal systems. The frame also helps explain how autonomous systems could acquire actorial identity and then functionally participate in the legal Matrix.

Details

Agents, Actors, Actorhood: Institutional Perspectives on the Nature of Agency, Action, and Authority
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-081-9

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 28 September 2011

Béatrice S. Hasler

This chapter evaluates the potential of virtual worlds for intercultural collaborative learning. A case study of a global lecture series is presented that used a virtual…

Abstract

This chapter evaluates the potential of virtual worlds for intercultural collaborative learning. A case study of a global lecture series is presented that used a virtual world as a platform for intercultural student collaboration. Students' subjective reports served as a basis for exploring cross-cultural differences in the perceived usefulness of virtual worlds for intercultural collaboration, and to examine what they have learned from working in an intercultural virtual team, what problems occurred, and how they resolved them. Based on the evaluation results, suggestions are provided for a culture-aware design of virtual worlds to facilitate intercultural collaborative learning and the development of intercultural literacy.

Details

Transforming Virtual World Learning
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-053-7

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 2 July 2015

Alessandro Tietz

One can read the history of MMOGs as a history of the development of the body (avatar) in the internet. To make the classical terms of sociology of the body fit the field…

Abstract

One can read the history of MMOGs as a history of the development of the body (avatar) in the internet. To make the classical terms of sociology of the body fit the field of MMOGs, this chapter builds on the social world perspective to leave the dichotomy between real (offline) and virtual (online) behind. MMOGs are seen as one of numerous social worlds (rooted in the here and now) and not as distant planets. In the Here and Now the body is an everyday matter of course. According to Goffman’s interaction order Face-to-Face interaction is the prototype of interaction and the influence of technical artifacts (pen and paper, telephone, etc.) negates its constituting elements – immediacy and reciprocity. Immediacy and reciprocity are interrelated with the body. Although MMOGs are technical artifacts, MMOGs re-establish elements constituting the body. The avatar becomes a key artifact and an inescapable necessity in experiencing the world of MMOGs. Therefore compared to other online-places, MMOGs expand the accessibility that is typical for the internet with the possibility of “physical” presence. But this physical presence is rather a semiotic body (or body-social), than a body in physical terms. The avatar therefore seems to be an intersubjective accomplishment pointing to group affiliations. Applying to the body, it is therefore not just skin and bones it is also socially constructed. The avatar is expressed or embodied society.

Details

Contributions from European Symbolic Interactionists: Conflict and Cooperation
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-856-4

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 August 2021

Jamye K. Foster, Melinda A. McLelland and Lacey K. Wallace

Over the past two decades, technology-facilitated communication between brand and consumer has become common. One way in which technology can be used to build brand…

Abstract

Purpose

Over the past two decades, technology-facilitated communication between brand and consumer has become common. One way in which technology can be used to build brand relationships in the online environment is by using brand avatars. This study considers social aspects of brand avatar communication, with the aim of determining if including an element of “socialness” adds to the impact of the brand avatar.

Design/methodology/approach

Specifically, the authors test three outcome variables core to building strong consumer relationships through experimental design comparing an avatar's communication style (transactional vs social) while considering the potential covariate of motivational orientation.

Findings

Overall, multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) results indicate that social functions provided by the brand avatar are more likely to facilitate the consumer–brand relationship (CBR) process than transactional functions. This study provides managerial support for using an avatar with social communication capabilities.

Originality/value

As social interaction becomes more expected by consumers in the current media landscape, understanding how to meet those demands on a large scale, through brand avatars, is valuable.

Details

Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7122

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 August 2018

Caroline J. Easton, Cassandra M. Berbary and Cory A. Crane

The purpose of this paper is to review the research on the use of technology in mental health and addiction treatment, focusing on the use of technology-assisted…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the research on the use of technology in mental health and addiction treatment, focusing on the use of technology-assisted treatment. Although initial research investigating technology-assisted treatment for substance use has demonstrated promising results, this paper highlights the need for treatment to address co-occurring substance use and intimate partner violence (IPV). This paper defines the benefits associated with the use of behavioral health avatar coaches in mental health treatment targeting substance use and IPV as well as providing preliminary research results regarding the use of avatar coaches in clinical settings.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review of the research relating to the use of technology in mental health and addiction treatment is provided. Additionally, a preliminary study aimed to develop an interactive therapy platform that utilizes virtual avatars as therapy coaches to help clients with substance abuse and IPV is presented. In this preliminary study, male participants were shown videos of various technology-based coaches matched on length, gestures and content. Researchers investigated whether patients preferred a virtual reality health coach, a cartoon health coach or a human health coach; as well as patient satisfaction and preference between two versions of the avatar.

Findings

A review of the relevant literature suggests that a majority of research has focused on using technology to replace face-to-face therapy with little research focusing on technology-assisted or augmented mental health and addiction treatment. Although initial research investigating avatar-assisted treatment for substance use has demonstrated promising results, research suggests a high prevalence of co-occurring substance use and IPV, suggesting the need for treatment to address co-occurring substance use and IPV. A preliminary research study was conducted to obtain patient feedback for personalizing avatar development into behavioral health interventions that target addiction and IPV.

Research limitations/implications

Although results of the preliminary study combined with previous research on avatar-assisted treatment for substance use has demonstrated promising results, theory-based research needs to be expanded to focus on randomized controlled trials of avatar-assisted treatment for co-occurring substance use and IPV.

Practical implications

This paper provides an overview of the use of technology-assisted treatment for co-occurring substance use and IPV. The preliminary results regarding patient satisfaction led to the development of additional avatars for use in interactive therapy.

Originality/value

This paper is one of the first to explore the use of avatar-assisted treatment for male offenders with co-morbid substance use and IPV.

Details

Advances in Dual Diagnosis, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-0972

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 September 2020

Miguel Angel Gonzales-Chávez and Natalia Vila-Lopez

The two major purposes of this paper are as follows: first, to identify those appropriate key attributes that a commercial avatar promoting a leisure service must have in…

Abstract

Purpose

The two major purposes of this paper are as follows: first, to identify those appropriate key attributes that a commercial avatar promoting a leisure service must have in terms of likeability, expertise, credibility and attractiveness, with the final purpose of stimulating millennials' acceptance (emotions, buying intentions and electronic word of mouth [eWOM]) and second, to compare if men and women expect the same attributes in a successful avatar.

Design/methodology/approach

A three avatar designs were prepared for this experiment. Then, they were presented to the respondents to be evaluated changing the order of appearance for avoiding biases: (attractive/likeable, expert/credible and normal/basic avatars). The participants were recruited using an online procedure. The final sample size was 104 consumers. They provided 302 valid responses about the three different avatars. A restaurant chain Chili's in Peru was used to define this experiment.

Findings

Findings of the study indicated that the design attributes of an avatar and the desired effects were related terms. Second, an expert/credible avatar worked better than an atractive/likeable one and also better than a common avatar, especially among the feminine target.

Originality/value

This paper tries to develop a guide for executives or entrepreneurs immersed in the gastronomic field in Peru, to enable them to make appropriate decisions regarding the definition of an attractive and disruptive web page design with an innovative tool: efficient commercial avatars.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 121 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 August 2018

Kai Li, Huynh Van Nguyen, T.C.E. Cheng and Ching-I Teng

As technology-created gamers’ representations, avatars are influential in communication among online gamers. However, there is scant research on how avatars

1092

Abstract

Purpose

As technology-created gamers’ representations, avatars are influential in communication among online gamers. However, there is scant research on how avatars’ characteristics impact gamers’ friendly behaviour via avatars, i.e., avatar friendliness, and how avatar friendliness is related to online gamer loyalty. The purpose of this paper is to develop a research model grounded in the theory of embodied cognition to examine the impacts of perceived avatar appearance agreeableness, attractiveness and height on avatar friendliness and online gamer loyalty.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors collect 1,384 responses from online gamers and use structural equation modelling for hypothesis testing.

Findings

The authors find that perceived avatar appearance agreeableness and attractiveness are positively related to avatar friendliness, while perceived avatar height is negatively related to avatar friendliness. Avatar friendliness, in turn, is positively related to online gamer loyalty.

Research limitations/implications

This study assessed gamers’ perceptions using a cross-sectional design. Future works could use a big data approach to collect behavioural and longitudinal data. Moreover, future works could measure avatar height using pixels.

Originality/value

The authors contribute to the e-commerce literature by inventing the new constructs of perceived avatar appearance agreeableness and avatar friendliness, and conducting the first study of using avatar friendliness to explain the impacts of the three avatar characteristics on online gamer loyalty. The findings also provide novel insights for e-commerce managers to effectively build a loyal gamer base.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 28 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 April 2012

Lorri M. Mon

This study aims to examine librarianship and education in virtual world settings, focusing particularly on how librarians and educators establish professional identity and…

2473

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine librarianship and education in virtual world settings, focusing particularly on how librarians and educators establish professional identity and trust while teaching and providing information services as avatars within Second Life.

Design/methodology/approach

Data was gathered through semi‐structured in‐depth interviews with 12 librarians and educators within the virtual world of Second Life, and in visits to 50 virtual world workplaces.

Findings

Librarians and educators faced challenges of establishing professional identity and credibility for two different audiences – i.e. “newbies” and “residents” – within the “game‐like” virtual world environment. Visual elements such as a conservative, humanoid avatar appearance, and imagery drawn from traditional workplaces were used by librarians and educators to establish their professional role with “newbies”, while for “residents” an upgraded avatar appearance was necessary to convey credibility.

Practical implications

For librarians and educators working within highly visual, graphical online settings such as virtual worlds, this study describes issues in providing avatar‐mediated online distance education and online library services.

Originality/value

This research provides in‐depth interviews and observations with librarians and educators from a variety of libraries and educational settings. The study also explores avatar‐mediated communication, which is little‐examined as yet in LIS research.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 68 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 May 2009

Tyler Pace, Aaron Houssian and Victoria McArthur

The purpose of this paper is to show how both the presentation and limitation of visual choices in massively multiplayer online role‐playing games (MMORPG) avatar creation…

1414

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to show how both the presentation and limitation of visual choices in massively multiplayer online role‐playing games (MMORPG) avatar creation interfaces tends to exclude or favor different real life social groups.

Design/methodology/approach

A novel method combining both quantitative and critical analysis of the syntagmatic‐paradigmatic structure of MMORPG avatar creation interfaces is used to inform the findings of this study.

Findings

This study concludes that as cultural interfaces, current fantasy themed MMORPGs remediate socially exclusive values both from fantasy literature and from their own game lore. The socially exclusive values deal largely with extreme and immutable racial and sexual dimorphism.

Research limitations/implications

Interfaces which present users with color palettes and/or smooth slider‐based body modifiers do not lend themselves well to this method of analysis. In addition to this, only a handful of the popular MMORPGs are analyzed within the body of this work.

Practical implications

This paper demonstrates that MMORPG players and designers need to be more aware about how they are constructing and embedding social values in their worlds. Avatars are critical conduits for online social dynamics and embedding socially exclusive values may transfer negative ideologies from old media to new.

Originality/value

This paper offers one of the earliest critiques of embedded values in avatar creation interfaces of MMORPGs. The paper aims to begin discussion on an overlooked area of now popular media that has not received any critical attention regarding its embedded messages of social inclusiveness or exclusiveness.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 7 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 February 2020

Youngjoon Choi, Fuad Mehraliyev and Seongseop (Sam) Kim

This study aim to attempt to conceptualize agency in a hospitality setting and examine the psychological effects of agency-related visual cues on user perception and…

1362

Abstract

Purpose

This study aim to attempt to conceptualize agency in a hospitality setting and examine the psychological effects of agency-related visual cues on user perception and intention to use to understand the role of agency in the digitalization of hotel services.

Design/methodology/approach

After developing demo videos of an express check-out application, two experiments were conducted to examine the effects of using an avatar and explain the psychological mechanism of how attributes of an avatar increase intention to use.

Findings

Study 1 found that the presence of an avatar had a positive influence on intention to use. Study 2 retested the findings of Study 1 and illustrated the psychological mechanism of how two attributes of an avatar (social position and gender) influenced perceived expertise and intention to use. A significant interaction effect between social position and gender was found on perceived expertise. Perceived expertise also mediated the effect of an avatar on intention to use in the male avatar conditions.

Originality/value

As the first attempt to investigate the role of avatars in human–computer interaction in a hotel setting, this study will serve as an example in testing the effects of agency-related technical features on user experience and behavioral intention, possibly broadening the current research scope of hospitality and tourism. This study also provides a useful guideline to develop and design a successful interface of digitalized hotel services.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 1000