Understanding Participation among Disabled Creators in Online Marketplaces

Katya Borgos-Rodriguez, Anne Marie Piper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Emerging social media platforms and online marketplaces introduce new ways for individuals to sell and distribute handmade or custom items. This new landscape of online tools has the potential to provide work opportunities for people who are excluded from traditional workplaces due to inaccessible environments and work expectations. The present study involves an analysis of the work practices of 44 disabled creators who sell and promote their goods via online marketplaces. Through an analysis of publicly available content on Etsy and social media platforms, complemented with semi-structured interviews with a subset of creators, we report on the ways disabled sellers create, share and provide support through their practices. Our analysis reveals that creators move their work to an online space seeking more accessible ways to earn income, yet find themselves navigating access barriers that are enacted through platform norms, reward structures and algorithms. We discuss how online marketplaces present unique opportunities and challenges to participation for people with disabilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3610105
JournalProceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue numberCSCW2
StatePublished - Oct 4 2023


  • accessibility
  • content creation
  • independent work
  • online marketplaces

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications


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