• Shaping Pro-Social Interaction in VR: An Emerging Design Framework

    Commercial social VR applications represent a diverse and evolving ecology with competing models of what it means to be social in VR. Drawing from expert interviews, this paper examines how the creators of different social VR applications think about how their platforms frame, support, shape, or constrain social interaction. The study covers a range of applications including: Rec Room, High Fidelity, VRChat, Mozilla Hubs, Altspace VR, AnyLand, and Facebook Spaces. We contextualize design choices underlying these applications, with particular attention paid to the ways that industry experts perceive, and seek to shape, the relationship between user experiences and design choices. We underscore considerations related to: (1) aesthetics of place (2) embodied affordances, (3) social mechanics, (4) and tactics for shaping social norms and mitigating harassment. Drawing on this analysis, we discuss the stakes of these choices, suggest future research directions, and propose an emerging design framework for shaping pro-social behavior in VR.

    #Social Augmentation#Social VR