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The researcher's dilemma: evaluating trust in computer-mediated communication

Riegelsberger, J; Sasse, MA; McCarthy, JD; (2003) The researcher's dilemma: evaluating trust in computer-mediated communication. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies , 58 (6) 759 - 781. 10.1016/S1071-5819(03)00042-9. Green open access

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Abstract

The aim of this paper is to establish a methodological foundation for human-computer interaction (HCI) researchers aiming to assess trust between people interacting via computer-mediated communication (CMC) technology. The most popular experimental paradigm currently employed by HCI researchers are social dilemma games based on the Prisoner's Dilemma (PD), a technique originating from economics. HCI researchers employing this experimental paradigm currently interpret the rate of cooperation-measured in the form of collective pay-off as the level of trust the technology allows its users to develop. We argue that this interpretation is problematic, since the game's synchronous nature models only very specific trust situations. Furthermore, experiments that are based on PD games cannot model the complexity of how trust is formed in the real world, since they neglect factors such as ability and benevolence. In conclusion, we recommend (a) means of improving social dilemma experiments by using asynchronous Trust Games, (b) collecting a broader range of data (in particular qualitative) and (c) increased use of longitudinal studies. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Type:Article
Title:The researcher's dilemma: evaluating trust in computer-mediated communication
Open access status:An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI:10.1016/S1071-5819(03)00042-9
Publisher version:http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1071-5819(03)00042-9
Language:English
Keywords:CMC, trust, prisoner's dilemma, game theory, experimental design, SOCIAL DILEMMAS, COOPERATION, RECIPROCITY
UCL classification:UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Computer Science

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