Caring about sharing: Couples' practices in single user device access

Maia Jacobs, Henriette Cramer, Louise Barkhuus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

15 Scopus citations


Most devices today are developed adhering to a one-user paradigm. Yet within households, couples are often sharing devices and accounts. In this paper we take an in-depth look at sharing practices and preferences of cohabiting couples, and discuss the nuances of existing practices surrounding accounts and devices. We present a qualitative interview and diary study with ten couples, consisting of 20 individual interviews, and individual 8-day diaries. Dichotomous access models do not reflect the sharing practices of our couples; in which intent, access, and utilization all characterized sharing behaviors. We present a detailed description of the intentional and unintentional sharing practices our participants used in their day to day interactions and discuss the different challenges that particularly one type of content pose in terms of issues of privacy. We discuss implications for accounts and devices based on the ways in which content was shared and hidden among collocated couples. We provide a structured account of these sharing practices to inform the design of multi-user settings within future technologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGROUP 2016 - Conference Program
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781450342766
StatePublished - Nov 13 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event19th ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work, GROUP 2016 - Sanibel Island, United States
Duration: Nov 13 2016Nov 16 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International ACM SIGGROUP Conference on Supporting Group Work


Conference19th ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work, GROUP 2016
CountryUnited States
CitySanibel Island


  • Groupware
  • Mobile computing practices
  • Sharing of devices
  • Social software

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)

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