The Journal of the Southern Association for Information Systems

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The Journal of the Southern Association for Information Systems

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With the declaration of COVID-19 as a pandemic by the World Health Organization and associated public health concerns and emergency measures, the lives of many came to a grinding halt. Whether due to stay-at-home orders and lockdowns, or quarantines, many were required to change their day-to-day way of life overnight. This not only changed the mechanical activities performed daily, such as driving to the office, going out to a restaurant, or attending a party, but this also changed the resultant implications of the utility we received from those activities. Utility theory posits that individuals choose what activities to perform based on some utility function, where the utility satisfies some need. As these activities to meet existing needs were disrupted, we seek to use this as an opportunity to explore how contribution in open-source communities changed, specifically the English Wikipedia. We utilize a natural experiment methodology, centered around the COVID-19 pandemic, and explore contribution patterns before and after the pandemic. Our project will contribute to the understanding of IS during unusual times, specifically in the context of open source communities that rely on volunteer time and effort