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Journal Article:

Author(s) :


Huysman, Marleen, Charles Steinfield, Chyng-Yang Jang, Kenneth David, Mirjam Huis in ’t Veld,Janpoot & Ingrid Mulder

Date of Publication :


2003 (forthcoming)

Article Title :


Virtual Teams and the Appropriation of Communication Technology: Exploring the Concept of Media Stickiness

Journal Title :


Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) The Journal of Collaborative Computing

Volume ID :


2003 1, 2

Pages(s) :


Abstract :


Abstract. This paper reports on an exploratory study of the evolving use of communication tools by six globally distributed teams. The analysis suggest that although teams have similar start-up conditions they evolve in different ways. We describe these differences as being a result of the different routine patterns of media use that the team members mutually enacted. Based on an analysis of six US-Dutch virtual teams, we propose the notion of ‘media stickiness’, a phenomenon the teams experienced during the process of structuring media-use patterns. We will argue that in the case of virtual teams, the evolution of media usage seems to be path dependent. Steps taken by a team in the early stages of its life cycle constrain later flexibility in terms of media usage. Media stickiness has several implications both for the way to manage virtual teams as well as for the way teams deal with information problems that seem to be endemic for global virtual teams.

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