All posts by Agnes Low

Participation Inequality in Wikis: A Temporal Analysis Using WikiChron

Title: Participation Inequality in Wikis: A Temporal Analysis Using WikiChron

Authors: Abel Serrano, Javier Arroyo and Samer Hassan, Complutense de Madrid

Abstract: It is widely accepted that peer production communities show a high level of inequality in the level of participation. Typically, we can observe a power law in the distribution of contributions. However, we argue that participation inequality, and specifically its evolution over time, has been understudied. Previous research has concentrated on large successful projects (e.g. Wikipedia), leaving a gap regarding small or mid-size communities. The wiki ecosystem is highly diverse, and so it may be the participation distribution in the communities and its evolution. The aim of this work is twofold: (1) To show a novel webtool, WikiChron, for the analysis of wiki evolution, with a focus on inequality metrics; (2) To provide relevant cases of comparative analysis that show the diversity of the wiki ecosystem, with examples that are counter-intuitive or contradict existing literature, while reflecting the limits of single-metric studies. We aim to open lines of wiki research which require the use of multiple metrics to study participation inequality.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Characterizing the Triggering Phenomenon in Wikipedia

Title: Characterizing the Triggering Phenomenon in Wikipedia

Authors: Anamika Chhabra and S. R. Sudarshan Iyengar, Indian Institute of Technology Ropar

Abstract: Collaborative knowledge building achieves better results than individual knowledge building essentially due to the triggering phenomenon taking place among the users in a collaborative setting. Although the literature points to a few theories supporting the existence of this phenomenon, yet these theories have never been validated in real collaborative environments, thus questioning their general prevalence. In this work, we provide a mechanized way to observe the presence of triggering in knowledge building environments. We implement the method on the most-edited articles of Wikipedia and show that it may help in discerning how the existing knowledge leads to the inclusion of more knowledge in these articles. The proposed technique may further be used in other collaborative knowledge building settings as well. The insights obtained from the study will help the portal designers in building portals enabling optimal triggering.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Exploring the Relationship Between “Informal Standards” and Contributor Practice in OpenStreetMap

Title: Exploring the Relationship Between “Informal Standards” and Contributor Practice in OpenStreetMap

Authors: Andrew Hall, University of Minnesota, Jacob Thebault-Spieker, Virginia Tech, Shilad Sen, Macalester College, Brent Hecht, Northwestern University, and Loren Terveen, University of Minnesota

Abstract: Peer production communities create valuable content such as software, encyclopedia articles, and map data. As part of the creation process, these communities define production standards for their content, e.g., semantic and syntactic requirements. We carried out a study in OpenStreetMap to investigate the role of that community’s standards for geographic metadata. We found that most applied metadata was consistent with the community’s standards; however, we also found that the standards identified many opportunities for applying metadata that were not achieved. In addition, when we situated the standards in the context of OpenStreetMap’s data model, we found a significant amount of ambiguity; the syntax allowed only one value, but everyday meaning — and the standards themselves — called for multiple values. Our results suggest significant opportunities for OpenStreetMap to produce additional valuable open source content to power applications.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

What is the Commons Worth? Estimating the Value of Wikimedia Imagery by Observing Downstream Use

Title: What is the Commons Worth? Estimating the Value of Wikimedia Imagery by Observing Downstream Use

Authors: Kristofer Erickson, University of Leeds, Felix Rodrigues Perez, independent scholar, and Jesus Rodrigues Perez, University of Glasgow

Abstract: The Wikimedia Commons (WC) is a peer-produced repository of freely licensed images, videos, sounds and interactive media, containing more than 45 million files. This paper attempts to quantify the societal value of the WC by tracking the downstream use of images found on the platform. We take a random sample of 10,000 images from WC and apply an automated reverse-image search to each, recording when and where they are used ‘in the wild’. We detect 54,758 downstream uses of the initial sample and we characterise these at the level of generic and country-code top-level domains (TLDs). We analyse the impact of specific variables on the odds that an image is used. The random sampling technique enables us to estimate overall value of all images contained on the platform. Drawing on the method employed by Heald et al (2015), we find a potential contribution of USD $28.9 billion from downstream use of Wikimedia Commons images over the lifetime of the project.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Developing A Framework to Assess Socio-economic Value of Open Data in India

Title: Developing A Framework to Assess Socio-economic Value of Open Data in India

Authors: Sharon Buteau, Preethi Rao, Vigneshraja Kadirvell and Anshuman Kumar Mehta, IFMR LEAD

Abstract: This paper attempts to develop a framework to assess the socio-economic value of Open Data in India. The paper discusses the various actors, their roles vis-a-vis usage of Open Data to generate intended output, and the net results of expected outcomes at the macro level. The paper further elaborates on how the framework is intended to observe and measure benefits arising as a result of Open Data production and utilization across various sectors in India and the value it creates for the stakeholders. The framework developed in this paper is intended to form the basis of a more elaborate study under which we aim to determine the rupee value of Open Data in India. An assessment of the value created by Open Data will provide the necessary insights to Open Data producers to base their decisions as regards scaling of their efforts as well as provide the much necessary feedback to the Open Data ecosystem as a whole.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Achieving Equilibrium: Use of Multiple Spaces and Media by FLOSS Workers to Improve Work-Life Balance

Title: Achieving Equilibrium: Use of Multiple Spaces and Media by FLOSS Workers to Improve Work-Life Balance

Authors: Aditya Johri, George Mason University, and Hon Jie Teo, New York College of Technology

Abstract: Participants in FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) projects are atypical in their collaborative practices given the high demand for virtual work. Through a study of workers from two organizations working on FLOSS projects we identify the boundaries, in terms of productivity and quality of life, of virtual work and actions workers take in order to find a work-life balance. We found that although workers valued the flexibility of working from home, they had difficulty focusing on their work for sustained time periods and often felt isolated. This motivated them to use coworking spaces – physical spaces used as work space by workers not on the same team or even the same firm – as a critical part of their space ecology. In conjunction with their media ecology – a mix of communication technologies including IRC – the space/media mix allowed them to balance their work and personal lives. We draw implications for better supporting FLOSS and virtual work practices through design of media/space and work practices.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Examining the Impact of Adopting Open Source Principles Inside Organisations

Title: Examining the Impact of Adopting Open Source Principles Inside Organisations

Authors: Noel Carroll, Lorraine Morgan and Kieran Conboy, LERO & NUI Galway

Abstract: Open Source software (OSS) has been highly prevalent in both practice and research. Given the value and effectiveness of OSS development to date, practitioners are keen to replicate these practices inside their respective corporations. This application of OSS practices inside the confines of a corporate entity has been coined Inner Source Software (ISS). While ISS presents many benefits, little is known about the opposing tensions that arise as a result of transitioning from a closed to an open software development environment. Such environments are increasingly under pressure to embrace more open and collaborative principles internally, while simultaneously managing operations in a tight and controlled manner. As part of this study, we conducted 20 interviews with international ISS expects across 15 global organisations. We uncover 13 core tensions that arise from the adoption of open principles in closed software practices. Based on these emerging results, we present new insights on the implementation of strategies to overcome competing tensions from openness in software development. We present some recommendations, which also call for fundamentally new research directions.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

An Investigation into Inner Source Software Development: Preliminary Findings from a Systematic Literature Review

Title: An Investigation into Inner Source Software Development: Preliminary Findings from a Systematic Literature Review

Authors: Henry Edison, Noel Carroll, Kieran Conboy and Lorraine Morgan, LERO & NUI Galway

Abstract: Given the value and effectiveness of open source software development to date, practitioners are keen to replicate these practices inside their respective corporations. This application of open source practices inside the confines of a corporate entity has been coined inner source software development. However, while organisations have found ways to directly benefit from revenue streams as a result of leveraging open source practices internally, the current research on inner source is scattered among different areas. Thus gaining clarity on the state-of-the-art in inner source research is challenging. In particular, there is no systematic literature review of known research to date on inner source. We address this challenge by presenting a systematic literature review that identifies, critically evaluates and integrates the findings of 29 primary studies on inner source. Case study approach is the common research approach undertaken in the area. We also identified 8 frameworks/methods, models and tools proposed in the literature to support inner source, as well as a set of benefits and challenges associated with inner source. We envision future work to perform deeper analysis and synthesis on the empirical research on inner source software development.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Developing sustainable Open Science solutions in the frame of EU funded research: the OpenUP case

Title: Developing sustainable Open Science solutions in the frame of EU funded research: the OpenUP case

Authors: Eleni Toli, Electra Sifacaki, Natalia Manola, Tony Ross-Hellauer, Edit Görögh, Michela Vignoli, Viltė Banelytė, Paolo Manghi, Saskia Woutersen-Windhouwer and Yannis Ioannidis

Abstract: Open Access and Open Scholarship have revolutionized the way scholarly artefacts are evaluated and published, while the introduction of new technologies and media in scientific workflows has changed the “how” and to “whom” science is communicated, and how stakeholders interact with the scientific community and the broader public. The EU funded project OpenUP is connecting people, information and tools and provides a knowledge hub and a validated framework for the review, assessment and dissemination aspects of the research lifecycle, under the prism of a gender-sensitive Open Science.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.

Sustainable digitalisation through different dimensions of openness: how can lock-in, interoperability, and long-term maintenance of IT systems be addressed?

Title: Sustainable digitalisation through different dimensions of openness: how can lock-in, interoperability, and long-term maintenance of IT systems be addressed?

Authors: Björn Lundell and Jonas Gamalielsson, University of Skövde

Abstract: Lock-in, interoperability, and long-term maintenance are three fundamental challenges that need to be addressed by any organisation involved in development, use and procurement of IT systems. This paper clarifies fundamental concepts and key dimensions of openness and provides examples of work-practices and recommendations for achieving sustainable digitalisation through addressing the fundamental challenges. Specifically, there are three main contributions. First, the concepts open standard, open source software, and open content are clarified and elaborated. Second, the associated three dimensions standard, software, and content are elaborated through examples of how different combinations along the dimensions can enable and inhibit sustainable digitalisation when IT-systems are developed and procured. Third, work-practices used by public sector organisations in specific projects for development and procurement of IT-systems are elaborated with the view to discuss how the three fundamental challenges are being addressed and provide guidance for how organisations can achieve a sustainable digitalisation.

Download: This contribution is part of the OpenSym 2018 proceedings and is available as a PDF file.