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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 19 May 2021

Carolanne Mahony, Ciara Heavin and David Sammon

The purpose of this article is to identify design guidelines for online resources based on the subjective assessment criteria used by individuals to assess and process…

1092

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to identify design guidelines for online resources based on the subjective assessment criteria used by individuals to assess and process information resources. This method of creating design guidelines targeted at precise user groups has the potential to aid designers and developers to create more user-centred information resources.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors gathered data using a prospective longitudinal study investigating the information behaviour of expectant and new mothers. Women were asked to report on their information-seeking activities in a series of semi-structured interviews covering pregnancy and early motherhood.

Findings

This research identified 15 assessment criteria that were utilised by women to assess and process information resources. The most popular resource criteria amongst participants were credibility and convenience, while completeness and relevance were the most popular information content criteria. The authors found that assessment criteria were not considered in isolation, with criteria such as formatting and search engine ranking impacting on participants' perception of other criteria.

Practical implications

This research demonstrates the potential of linking a user groups subjective assessment criterion to design guidelines. The authors propose that these guidelines could be used to help design an online information resource. They could also be used to assess if an existing online resource met the needs of a user group. The methodology used in this study could be leveraged to create design guidelines for user groups.

Originality/value

This research uses subjective assessment criteria as a means of understanding how expectant new mothers process information resources. People use subjective judgements when processing information resources, and this should be incorporated into the design of information resources. Analysing longitudinal data allowed the authors to build a rich picture of how participants evaluated and compared different information resources.

Article
Publication date: 9 January 2023

Stephen McCarthy, Wendy Rowan, Carolanne Mahony and Antoine Vergne

Social media platforms are a pervasive technology that continues to define the modern world. While social media has brought many benefits to society in terms of connection…

92

Abstract

Purpose

Social media platforms are a pervasive technology that continues to define the modern world. While social media has brought many benefits to society in terms of connection and content sharing, numerous concerns remain for the governance of social media platforms going forward, including (but not limited to) the spread of misinformation, hate speech and online surveillance. However, the voice of citizens and other non-experts is often missing from such conversations in information systems literature, which has led to an alleged gap between research and the everyday life of citizens.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors address this gap by presenting findings from 16 h of online dialog with 25 citizens on social media platform governance. The online dialog was undertaken as part of a worldwide consultation project called “We, the internet”, which sought to provide citizens with a voice on a range of topics such as “Digitalization and Me,” “My Data, Your Data, Our Data” and “A Strong Digital Public Sphere.” Five phases of thematic analysis were undertaken by the authors to code the corpus of qualitative data.

Findings

Drawing on the Theory of Communicative Action, the authors discuss three dialogical processes critical to citizen discourse: lifeworld reasoning, rationalization and moral action. The findings point toward citizens’ perspectives of current and future issues associated with social media platform governance, including concerns around the multiplicity of digital identities, consent for vulnerable groups and transparency in content moderation. The findings also reveal citizens’ rationalization of the dilemmas faced in addressing these issues going forward, including tensions such as digital accountability vs data privacy, protection vs inclusion and algorithmic censorship vs free speech.

Originality/value

Based on outcomes from this dialogical process, moral actions in the form of policy recommendations are proposed by citizens and for citizens. The authors find that tackling these dark sides of digitalization is something too important to be left to “Big Tech” and equally requires an understanding of citizens’ perspectives to ensure an informed and positive imprint for change.

Details

Internet Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

Keywords

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