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Call for Participation for a

Workshop and Minitrack on "Persistent Conversation"


Part of the Digital Documents Track of the

Thirty-third Annual Hawai'i International Conference on Systems Sciences (HICSS)

Maui, Hawai'i, January 4-7, 2000.


What: Minitrack and Workshop on 'Persistent Conversation' (e.g. email, MUDs, IRC, etc.)
Who: Designers and researchers from CMC, HCI, the social sciences, the humanities, etc.
Dates: Abstract submission - April 1; Paper submission - June 1;
Chairs: Thomas Erickson and Susan Herring


Persistent Conversation: Definition

This minitrack and workshop will explore persistent conversation, the transposition of ordinarily ephemeral conversation into the potentially persistent digital medium. The phenomena of interest include conversations carried out using email, mailing lists, news groups, bulletin board systems, textual and graphic MUDs, chat clients, structured conversation systems, document annotation systems, etc. The persistence of such conversations as computerized records, although variable in duration and ease of user access, gives them the potential to be searched, browsed, replayed, annotated, visualized, restructured, and recontextualized, thus opening the door to a variety of new uses and practices.


The aim of the minitrack is to bring together researchers who analyze existing computer-mediated conversational practices and sites, with designers who propose, implement, or deploy new types of conversational systems. By bringing together participants from such diverse areas as anthropology, computer-mediated communication, HCI, interaction design, linguistics, psychology, rhetoric, sociology, and the like, we hope that the work of each may inform the others, suggesting new questions, methods, perspectives, and design approaches relating to theme of persistent conversation.


The minitrack will begin with a half day workshop on Tuesday afternoon. The goal of the workshop is to provide a background for the sessions and to set the stage for a dialog between researchers and designers that will continue during the minitrack. The minitrack co-chairs will contribute the bulk of the workshop content, one presenting a design example and the other presenting a research approach to computer-mediated conversation, with these two cases providing a common ground and starting point for the research-design dialog.

Minitrack Papers

We are seeking papers that address issues such as the following:

Minitrack Chairs

Thomas Erickson
IBM T. J. Watson Research Center
3136 Irving Ave. S.
Minneapolis MN 55409-2515 USA
email: snowfall@acm.org
tel: 612-823-3663
fax: 612-823-1576
Susan C. Herring
Program in Linguistics
University of Texas at Arlington
Arlington, TX 76019 USA
email: susan@ling.uta.edu
tel: (817) 272-5234
fax: (817) 272-2731


April 1, 1999: Authors submit abstracts via email to Minitrack Chairs for guidance and indication of appropriate content.
June 1, 1999: Authors submit full papers to Minitrack Chairs.
August 31, 1999: Minitrack Chair sends notice of accepted papers to Authors.
Oct. 1, 1999: Accepted manuscripts, camera-ready, sent to minitrack chair; one author MUST register by this time.
November 1, 1999: All other conference registrations must be received. Acceptance of registrations after this date is subject to space limitations.

Instructions for Paper Submission

1. For the Persistent Conversation minitrack you must submit six (6) paper copies of the full paper to:

Tom Erickson
3136 Irving Ave. S.
Minneapolis MN 55408-2515

2. Do not submit the manuscript to more than one Minitrack Chair. Papers should contain original material and not be previously published, or currently submitted for consideration elsewhere.

3. Each paper must have a title page to include title of the paper, full name of all authors, and complete addresses including affiliation(s), telephone number(s), and e-mail address(es). Papers should be 22-26 double-spaced pages, including diagrams.

4. The first page of the manuscript should include the title and a 300-word abstract of the paper.


HICSS-33 consists of eight tracks:

For more information about these tracks and a list of minitracks each consist of, please check the HICSS web page for full listing of the minitracks: http://www.hicss.hawaii.edu

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