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Cooperation and Groupness: Community Formation in Small online Collaborative Groups

Publication Type:

Conference Proceedings


Proceedings of the ACM Group Conference 2007, Sanibel Island, FL, p.206-215 (2007)


We present a detailed descriptive analysis of the adoption and adaptation of common online tools by a newly forming small group with a cooperative work task. We compare their use of different tools over the course of successive specific cooperative activities, and describe how they use these tools as objects in the formation of a small online community. General patterns of participation that recognize the physical contexts of online group members, and specific patterns of interaction that influence the formation of an online community are explicated. The results of this study have implications for understanding how tools and tasks influence group formation and sense of community in online systems.