“Are You Watching This Film or What?” Interruption and the Juggling of Cohorts

  • Tolmie P
  • Crabtree A
  • Rodden T
 et al. 
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A proliferation of mobile devices in everyday life has increased the likelihood of technologically mediated interruptions. We examine ethnographic data from an SMS- based pervasive game in order to explicate the situated character of interruption. Ethnomethodological analysis of gameplay in the context of participants’ everyday lives shows that interruption handling is shaped by its accountability to the various people or ‘cohorts’ whose concerns participants need to juggle simultaneously. Findings inform existing approaches to design where certain presuppositions regarding the nature of interruption prevail. Accordingly, we propose an approach to interruption handling that respects the ways in which people orient to and reason about interruptions locally in the conduct of situated action.

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  • Peter Tolmie

  • Andy Crabtree

  • Tom Rodden

  • Steve Benford

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