A Suburban Communications Network: Recurrence of Use, Growth of Participation, and the Challenges of Sustainability

Fiona Redhead, Margot Brereton


This paper presents findings from a longitudinal research project exploring the use of a local digital community noticeboard and the mechanisms that have worked to grow and sustain community participation in this communications network.

The lessons learnt from this research include the importance of providing clear indication to community members that communications are being seen by the community, maintaining visibility of high interest community- building communications, and involving community organisers. In discussion of our research, we suggest that future design supports visibility of long-term communications, and provides an accessible place to make communications public (with less emphasis on linking individual identities).

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The Journal of Community Informatics. ISSN: 1712-4441