Social networking sites as platforms to persuade behaviour change in domestic energy consumption

Foster, Derek and Blythe, Mark and Lawson, Shaun and Doughty, Mark (2009) Social networking sites as platforms to persuade behaviour change in domestic energy consumption. In: AISB 2009, Edinburgh, UK.

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FosterD.pdf
This paper describes a pilot investigation into the use of the social networking site Facebook as a platform for persuasive applications. The application domain is behaviour change in domestic energy consumption and the study focuses on determining peoples’ attitudes towards the hypothetical coupling of the consumer product Wattson, which can monitor domestic electricity usage, to a Facebook application termed Watts Up. The Facebook application presents visualisations of users’ own electricity consumption as well as that of their friends. Users’ attitudes towards this notion were accumulated and analysed using grounded theory. Some user indications revealed negative opinions about the concept based, for instance, around privacy and confusion; however the balance of opinion appeared to favour the underlying idea that revealing other people’s energy usage data would lead to competition and peer influence to reduce energy consumption
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Abstract

This paper describes a pilot investigation into the use
of the social networking site Facebook as a platform for
persuasive applications. The application domain is behaviour
change in domestic energy consumption and the study focuses
on determining peoples’ attitudes towards the hypothetical
coupling of the consumer product Wattson, which can monitor
domestic electricity usage, to a Facebook application termed
Watts Up. The Facebook application presents visualisations of users’ own electricity consumption as well as that of their friends. Users’ attitudes towards this notion were accumulated and analysed using grounded theory. Some user indications revealed negative opinions about the concept based, for instance, around privacy and confusion; however the balance of opinion appeared to favour the underlying idea that revealing other people’s energy usage data would lead to competition and peer influence to reduce energy consumption.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information:This paper describes a pilot investigation into the use of the social networking site Facebook as a platform for persuasive applications. The application domain is behaviour change in domestic energy consumption and the study focuses on determining peoples’ attitudes towards the hypothetical coupling of the consumer product Wattson, which can monitor domestic electricity usage, to a Facebook application termed Watts Up. The Facebook application presents visualisations of users’ own electricity consumption as well as that of their friends. Users’ attitudes towards this notion were accumulated and analysed using grounded theory. Some user indications revealed negative opinions about the concept based, for instance, around privacy and confusion; however the balance of opinion appeared to favour the underlying idea that revealing other people’s energy usage data would lead to competition and peer influence to reduce energy consumption.
Keywords:energy, sustainability, HCI, user experience, persuasive technologies, social networks, carbon
Subjects:G Mathematical and Computer Sciences > G400 Computer Science
G Mathematical and Computer Sciences > G440 Human-computer Interaction
Divisions:College of Science > School of Computer Science
ID Code:2326
Deposited By: Derek Foster
Deposited On:20 Apr 2010 09:32
Last Modified:02 Sep 2014 09:09

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