Computer-Supported Collaborative PLAY

Also mentioned by Philip's great blog, Bill Gaver will give a keynote talk which I find relevant at ECSCW:

All W and No P Makes CSCW a Dull Field: 
Supporting Ludic Collaboration by William Gaver (Royal College of Art, London, UK)

CSCW was built on the recognition that work is inherently collaborative. But that doesn’t mean that all collaborations involve work. We also join together to play — and not just at games, but at life more generally. We engage in desultory conversations, gossip, and flirtations, we pursue humorous speculation and casual role-play. Ludic activities such as these are motivated by intrinsic pleasure rather than any particular outcome. But playful interactions do have benefits. They allow us to explore new perspectives, negotiate shared orientations, maintain emotional bonds, and set new directions. Play is important for our lives, and this includes our working lives as well as our private ones. Focusing collaborative technologies too narrowly on work risks missing the benefits of more playful forms of collaboration. The problem is that CSCW, like most domains of HCI, tends to understand successful systems in terms of clear usability and utility, while play is by definition is less well defined and more open to appropriation and interpretation. In this talk, I discuss a number of examples of systems that support “computer supported collaborative playfulness”. Equally importantly, I discuss how embracing ludic activities changes our assumptions about interactive systems, and discuss approaches to designing for and evaluating ludic technologies.

Why do I blog this? that's definitely a claim I agree with, especially because I find this interesting as a researcher and also because I work on project about collaboration and games for companies (there seems to be a lack of applied research in those companies to create guidelines/model/use cases/... for that matter). Besides, CSCW is not just focused on work since there is new emerging field about Computer Supported Collaborative Learning which is already very active for 10 years.

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