User motivation in collaborative development



The new media have changed the way people communicate. New technical means can translate into new types of social interaction and organization affecting all areas of human activity. For the production of immaterial goods, the internet has facilitated different types of relationships between task initiators and task solvers, or among task solvers. It can facilitate the exploitation of human resources on a large scale to more easily solve certain issues while at the same time having a small impact on the users whose effort is being exploited. The labor networks that are thus created are usually made up of large numbers of volunteers. The paper explores the potential reasons why so many people are willing to give their work away for such projects, with no promise of material rewards, and briefy looks at the Black Mesa crowdsourced game development project to identify user motivations. In such voluntary activities, the most ofen encountered motivations are intrinsic. Extrinsic motivation is also present, but on a less salient position, while amotivation is completely incompatible.

Keywords: intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, amotivation, crowdsourcing, immaterial labor, playbor, online communities