Social participation in open source: What it means for designers

Paula M. Bach, Michael Twidale

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Open source is important in the scope of the world, government, research, industry, and education and presents new trends in how to engage in social participation. Socially meaningful participation has the appeal of participatory culture and social networking; it can be defined as the expectations community members have of interdependence, mutual obligations, and cooperation. Designers working on open source projects are relatively rare compared with the thousands of developers who contribute to projects. Contributors to an open source project can also benefit from using the software, depending on its domain. Developers also enjoy working with hacker gurus and seeing their code. Social participation for open source designers means embracing opportunities to engage in participatory culture, making social connections in a community where their design skills are valuable resources. The nature of open source software development is global and distributed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages5
Specialist publicationInteractions
StatePublished - May 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction


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