Coordination and division of labor in open content communities: The role of template messages in Wikipedia

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Coordination and division of labor in open content communities: The role of template messages in Wikipedia is a 2010 conference paper written in English by Rossi A., Gaio L., Den Besten M., Dalle J.-M. and published in Proceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences.

[edit] Abstract

Though largely spontaneous and loosely regulated, the process of peer production within online communities is also supplemented by additional coordination mechanisms. In this respect, we study an emergent organizational practice of the Wikipedia community, the use of template messages, which seems to act as effective and parsimonious coordination device to signal quality concerns or other issues that need to be addressed. We focus on the template "NPOV", which signals breaches on the fundamental policy of neutrality of Wikipedia articles, and we show how and to what extent putting such template on a page affects the editing process. We notably find that intensity of editing increases immediately after the "NPOV" template appears and that controversies about articles which have received the attention of a more limited group of editors before they were tagged as controversial have a lower chance to be treated quickly.

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