Idioculture in crowd computing: A focus on group interaction in an event-driven social media system

Seongtaek Lim, Sang Yun Cha, Chala Park, Inseong Lee, Jinwoo Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This study aims to establish a conceptual framework on the characteristics of idioculture in crowd computing, as well as the antecedents and consequences of idioculture. Idioculture is defined as distinct cultural elements that characterize a certain group. It is important in group interaction because it can be used as a tool to seek a groups optimal distinctiveness, which is a natural human desire to maintain a balance between being too inclusive or too personalized in crowd settings. In order to provide empirical data for the conceptual framework, this study developed a crowd computing system prototype, named event-driven social media (EDSM), which supports idioculture emergence and sharing in a crowd setting. The prototype was implemented in a massive-scale event involving approximately 20,000 people. The study results were derived from content analysis on 5988 text messages from 1510 users exchanged through EDSM during the event and interviews with 15 users after the event. The findings revealed that group cultures were triggered by EDSM to become idioculture, and the idioculture shared through EDSM affected user experience. First, sources of idioculture included collective, playful, and routine-breaking group cultures. Second, the characteristics of idioculture included catchwords, humorous references, and nicknames. Third, by sharing idioculture, users of EDSM were able to experience social connectedness, group cohesion, and social enjoyment. This study ends with implications on the design of EDSM from the perspective of HCI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)632-646
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Human Computer Studies
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Sep

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research on which this paper is based was supported by Tatter and Company (TNC) in Republic of Korea. We would like to express our special thanks to Jeehyun Moon in MEME, Boston, and Chester Jungseok Roh and Bonggan Kim in TNC. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea Grant funded by the Korean Government ( NRF-2010-342-B00009 ).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Education
  • Engineering(all)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Hardware and Architecture


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