The Public Life of Data: Investigating Reactions to Visualizations on Reddit

Tobias Kauer, Arran Ridley, Marian Dörk, Benjamin Bach

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract / Description of output

This research investigates how people engage with data visualizations when commenting on the social platform Reddit. There has been considerable research on collaborative sensemaking with visualizations and the personal relation of people with data. Yet, little is known about how public audiences without specific expertise and shared incentives openly express their thoughts, feelings, and in-sights in response to data visualizations. Motivated by the extensive social exchange around visualizations in online communities, this research examines characteristics and motivations of people’s reactions to posts featuring visualizations. Following a Grounded Theory approach, we study 475 reactions from the /r/dataisbeautiful community, identify ten distinguishable reaction types, and consider their contribution to the discourse. A follow-up survey with 168 Reddit users clarified their intentions to react. Our results help understand the role of personal perspectives on data and inform future interfaces that integrate audience reactions into visualizations to foster a public discourse about data.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2021 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '21)
PublisherACM Association for Computing Machinery
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781450380966
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2021
EventThe ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2021 - Virtual Conference, Japan
Duration: 8 May 202113 May 2021
https://chi2021.acm.org/

Conference

ConferenceThe ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2021
Abbreviated titleCHI 2021
Country/TerritoryJapan
CityVirtual Conference
Period8/05/2113/05/21
Internet address

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • data visualization
  • reddit
  • personal data

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