A Qualitative Study of Ethnographic Variables Affecting Exchange of Knowledge among Online Help Seekers and Elite Digital Natives with Recommendations for Getting the Best Technology Assistance Possible
Donald Allen Deever, Steven Grubaugh, Gabe Gonzalez, Greg Levitt

In our contemporary world, people of all ages are coding and almost everyone needs general and specific expert technology help from time to time. Software developers as technology experts are a unique ethnographic community that exhibit particular cultural traits, and who work together according to a previously unwritten yet specific set of rules and practices (Wellman & Gulia, 2018). This ethnographic qualitative study examines how experienced members of a small online software development community react and learn through help-seeking questions of newer members who need support in understanding the idiosyncrasies of a particular software development language (Bosch & D’Mello, 2017). This research analyzes the communications between askers and helpers, seeking to discover why the requests for some coding advice goes unanswered, why other new users receive less-than-satisfactory answers, and still yet why certain new members receive beneficial to highly useful assistance and information regarding their requests (Schueller, Tomasino, & Mohr, 2017). Study implications potentially extend to many domestic and worldwide online learning communities and help create a research to practice foundational knowledge of the best practices for asking for online help in order to receive maximum assistance from the most experienced members of various online help forums.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jehd.v8n3a5