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      EasiSocial: Recommendations in the Development and Training of Social Media Tools for Older People


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      Proceedings of the 32nd International BCS Human Computer Interaction Conference (HCI)

      Human Computer Interaction Conference

      4 - 6 July 2018

      Service Design, Facebook, Online Social Networks, Design Recommendations, Social Media, Social isolation, Technology adoption



            Online Social Networks are regarded as one of the biggest successes of the Internet. Facebook, for example, has over 1.59 billion monthly active users. Online Social Networks offer one potential strategy for addressing feelings of social isolation amongst the aging population. Nevertheless, many older people do not use online social networks due to barriers resulting from a lack of understanding, and perceived usefulness of these services. This paper presents the findings from a ten-week training course where participants were trained to use Facebook and introduced to a novel web application, called EasiSocial, which personalises Facebook’s user interface (UI), for use by older users. An evaluation study was undertaken with 9 users (69–80 years old, mean age 75.2, ST DEV 3.231) of both services to highlight existing adoption barriers and to validate the hypothesis that personalising the UI of online social media services can promote engagement.. Our analysis demonstrated that EasiSocial was statistically significantly ‘easier’ (p-value < 0.05) to learn and use than the standard Facebook UI and therefore potentially helpful to increase the adoption of social media technologies. The study also highlighted that training plays an important role in supporting adoption. Recommendations for both development and training are highlighted.


            Author and article information

            July 2018
            July 2018
            : 1-5
            [0001]Ulster University

            Belfast, BT15 1ED
            [0002]Ulster University

            Jordanstown,BT37 0QB
            © Boyd et al. Published by BCS Learning and Development Ltd. Proceedings of British HCI 2018. Belfast, UK.

            This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

            Proceedings of the 32nd International BCS Human Computer Interaction Conference
            Belfast, UK
            4 - 6 July 2018
            Electronic Workshops in Computing (eWiC)
            Human Computer Interaction Conference
            Product Information: 1477-9358BCS Learning & Development
            Self URI (journal page): https://ewic.bcs.org/
            Electronic Workshops in Computing


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