Massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs) have great potential as sites for research within the social and behavioral sciences and human-computer interaction. This is because “guilds” — semi-persistent groups in online games — are much like groups in real organizations. In this paper, we examine how groups and individuals find appropriate matches and whether appropriate matches lead newcomers to stay longer in their groups in an online game environment. Results from archival data, observation, and survey in the game World of Warcraft (WoW) indicate that different selection methods lead to person-group fit for social and task-oriented characteristics and good fit leads recruits to stay longer in their group. In particular, recruitment of new members to task-oriented guilds was most successful when brief interactions were used whereas recruitment to social-oriented guilds was most successful when probationary periods and referrals were used.
Choi, Bo Reum; Kraut, Robert E.; and Fichman, Mark, "Matching People And Groups: Recruitment And Selection In Online Games" (2008). SIGHCI 2008 Proceedings. 3.