ایجاد آواتار در جهان مجازی: رفتارها و انگیزش
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|30064||2014||6 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Computers in Human Behavior, Volume 34, May 2014, Pages 213–218
Avatar creation has become common for people to participate and interact in virtual worlds. Using an online survey (N = 244), we investigated both the behavioral characteristics and major motivations for avatar creation in virtual worlds. Our results suggest that a majority of the participants had multiple avatars; these avatars’ appearance did not merely resemble the human players; and their personality did not necessarily mirror the player’s real personality. Furthermore, participants on average spent over 20 h per week and often interacting with others in the virtual worlds. Our exploratory factor analysis yielded four major motivations: virtual exploration, social navigation, contextual adaptation, and identity representation.
Virtual worlds are simulated environments with digital resemblance of animated actors and their physical surroundings where they can engage in interactive activities through computer-generated tools (Bainbridge, 2007). Although virtual worlds have been around since the 1970s, they have evolved from text-based MUDs in the early days to become more commonly executed through 3D modeling, sophisticated graphic design, and multimodal interactive features over the past decade. For example, the most popular types of virtual worlds nowadays are massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) such as World of Warcraft and creativity-oriented virtual environments (COVEs) such as Second Life ( Bainbridge, 2007 and Ducheneaut et al., 2009; See Fig. 1). These virtual worlds can easily engage millions of participants. In 2012, World of Warcraft claimed that they have over 10 million subscribers ( Ziebart, 2012). Second Life had at least 1 million active users with $700 million annual transaction in virtual goods ( Lacy, 2012). The personal, social, and financial impact of virtual worlds has become increasingly significant all around the world. Full-size image (88 K) Fig. 1. Examples of MMORPGs (top and bottom right) and COVEs (top and bottom left). Figure options A common practice for people to participate and interact in these virtual worlds is to create avatars. The term avatar is originally defined as the descent of a deity to the Earth in an incarnate form or some manifest shape in Hinduism (Ahn, Fox, & Bailenson, 2012). However, in today’s society, it has been broadly adopted as any form of representation that marks a user’s identity. Therefore, a name, a voice, a photo, or an email address can all be considered as a user’s avatar (Bailenson, Yee, Blascovich, & Guadagno, 2008). Nonetheless, the most popular use of the term avatar is to refer to the digital self-representation of participants in the virtual worlds (Bailenson et al., 2008 and Yee and Bailenson, 2007) and that is how it is defined in this study. With the advent of technologies, virtual world participants now have a wide range of choices to represent themselves. Graphically, it can be either a two-dimensional icon (Blackwood, 2006 and Fink, 1999) or a three-dimensional human-like or fictional creature (Ahn et al., 2012). These avatars can be stock images pre-programmed by professional developers or unique representations created by users themselves with built-in artistic software (Cheng et al., 2002 and Taylor, 2002). Options for avatar customization have increased significantly in recent years. For example, many virtual worlds now allow participants to modify their avatars’ physical features from eye color, hairstyle, height, and body shape to clothing, accessories, and personality traits (see Fig. 2 and Fig. 3 for examples of avatar appearance in MMORPGs and COVEs). These features provide users freedom to experiment and build their self-representations with unique appearances, personalities, and personalized behavioral patterns to support their social interactions online (Ahn et al., 2012). Full-size image (32 K) Fig. 2. An example of avatar appearance in MMORPGs. Figure options Full-size image (54 K) Fig. 3. An example of avatar appearance in COVEs. Figure options In the earlier work, scholars have found that despite the technological constraints, people prefer to having control of their avatar design (Schroeder, 2002); avatar customization can make digital gaming experiences more pleasant (Bailey et al., 2009 and Trepte and Reinecke, 2010); and people actually spend considerable amount of time modifying their avatars to represent the characteristics essential to their identities when interacting with others online (Ducheneaut et al., 2009, Lim and Reeves, 2009, Neustaedter and Fedorovskaya, 2009, Ratan and Hasler, 2011, Taylor, 2002 and Yee, 2006). Building on previous scholarship, we investigated both the behavioral characteristics and major motivations for avatar creation in virtual worlds in this study.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
4. Results 4.1. Behavioral patterns The number of avatars participants used on a regular basis in virtual worlds ranged from 1 to 16 (M = 3.26, SD = 2.92). Of all the participants, 27.0% reported having only one avatar that they used on a regular basis; 31.3% reported having two; 11.5% reported having three, 8.6% reported having four, 9.4% reported having five, and the remaining 12.3% reported having more than five. When asked about the main avatar’s look, 64.3% reported that their main avatars resembled human being, 33.6% reported that their main avatars resembled another species, and 2.0% reported that their main avatars resembled non-organic creatures. Participants were asked to rate on a 10-point scale about the similarity in terms of physical appearance and personality between their main avatars and themselves in real life (1 = very different, 10 = very similar). The average score for physical appearance was 3.20 (SD = 2.68), which suggests that participants’ main avatars look rather different from their look in reality. The average score for personality was 5.66 (SD = 3.14), which suggests that participants’ main avatars may or may not reflect their own personality depending on the specific circumstances. When asked how long it had been since they created their main avatars, the answers varied considerably, from less than a month to 168 months, with an average of 48.18 months (SD = 30.10). These main avatars were created in 28 different virtual worlds; 77% participants said their main avatars were created for MMORPGs while 23% were for COVEs. The length of participants’ membership in the virtual world where they created their main avatars ranged from 1 month to 132 months, with an average of 51.58 months (SD = 28.96). When asked how many hours per week do you spend in the virtual world using your main avatar, the responses varied from 1 to 126 h, with an average 22.41 h per week (SD = 17.96). Only 6.6% of the participants said they spent time in that virtual world mostly alone without any social interaction, 20.5% said mostly with others, and 72.1% said sometimes alone and sometimes with others. Also, 85.6% of the participants said they created more than one avatar in that virtual world, which varied from 1 to 33 (M = 8.29, SD = 8.23). 4.2. Major motivations Initial assessment of the correlation matrices indicated a considerable degree of inter-statement correlation. From the correlation matrix, the Kaiser–Meyer–Olkin (KMO) measure of sampling adequacy index and the Bartlett test of Sphericity indicated the data set’s appropriateness for factor analysis (Hair, Anderson, Tatham, & Black, 1998). Results of a Principal Components analysis yielded six factors out these 18 items with the eigenvalue above 1, but the Scree Plot indicated only four distinct factors. Then the methods of Maximum Likelihood for extraction and Varimax for rotation were used. Results of this exploratory factor analysis suggested that the four factors together accounted for 41.09% of the variance, with the first factor accounting for 12.30%, the second factor accounting for 11.15%, the third factor accounting for 10.23% of the variance, and the fourth factor accounting for 7.41% of the variance. All items and factor loadings are reported in Table 1. Table 1. Factor loadings for exploratory factor analysis with varimax rotation of major motivations for avatar creation in virtual worlds. Scale item 1 2 3 4 I create my main avatar to be unique and not a mainstream follower in the virtual world .64 .15 −.09 .19 I create my main avatar to be creative in the virtual world .58 .14 .11 .30 I create my main avatar to reflect my aesthetic view in the virtual world .55 .05 .07 .15 I create my main avatar to reflect my mood at the time in the virtual world .52 .21 .20 .01 I create my main avatar to differentiate it in the virtual world from my actual self .40 .08 .27 −.20 I create my main avatar to fit surroundings in the virtual world such as themes, or situations I am immersed in .40 .26 .27 .01 I create my main avatar to build a reputation in the virtual world .10 .80 .15 .21 I create my main avatar to reach a specific functional goal such as business, camouflage, or upgrade in the virtual world .21 .61 .14 −.21 I create my main avatar to make a lot of friends in the virtual world .27 .60 .28 .03 I create my main avatar to engage other players and socialize in the virtual world .12 .45 .13 .24 I create my main avatar depending on whom I interact with in the virtual world .24 .23 .72 −.04 I create my main avatar because a particular look of others in the virtual world catches my eyes .05 .10 .71 .14 I create my main avatar to fit surroundings in the real world such as weather and current affairs in the virtual world .06 .33 .60 .11 I create my main avatar to resemble my actual self in the virtual world .16 .08 .15 .59 I create my main avatar to reflect an ideal version of my actual self in the virtual world .36 .06 .24 .56 I create my main avatar to portray a certain personal trait in the virtual world .30 .25 .15 .43 I create my main avatar to fit the role I am playing in the virtual world .35 .18 .05 .33 I create my main avatar to have fun in the virtual world .03 .02 .06 −.13 Note: Factor loadings >.40 are in boldface. Table options The first factor focused on virtual exploration (Cronbach’s α = .71). Items loaded on this factor tended to emphasize participants wanting to be unique, different, and creative when they are immersed in the virtual worlds, which allow them to explore things they normally cannot do in reality. The second factor focused on social navigation (Cronbach’s α = .75). Items loaded on this factor tended to emphasize player interaction, developing friendship, and building reputation. The third factor focused on contextual adaptation (Cronbach’s α = .75). Items loaded on this factor tended to emphasize adapting to specific contexts such as social actors encountered, current events, and physical surroundings. The fourth and also last factor focused on identity representation (Cronbach’s α = .65). Items loaded on this factor tended to focus on participants’ consideration related how they wanted to represent their identities in virtual worlds, be it a resemblance of the actual self in reality, portraying a particular personal trait, or enacting the ideal self in their mind.