Yahooligans! Survey for Korean Kids

Executive Summary

Primary Usability Issues

  • The majority of participants chose blue as their preferred color
    • Among the three different colored main pages (red, blue and green), the blue page was chosen as the preferred main page.
    • Among the given colors (9 colors), blue was chosen as the favorite color. Note: Green was chosen as the third favorite color, while yellow was the second favorite.
  • Category icons from the US were not particularly popular among participants
    • Culture differences account for different symbol ideology.
  • The participants were viewed to prefer specific contents, notably games and entertainment.
    • The topic that was most popular among participants was games, with entertainment as the second most popular.
    • Entertainment was the most popular news topic, with Web-Celeb as the most popular entertainment service.
  • The percentage of kids that use the internet are low
    • l Kids don’t know how to navigate the web, due to the fact they have no one to teach or guide them at home or at school.
    • l Among the services that could be offered, kids chose the Downloader as the most useful for learning and for doing homework.

Introduction

The purpose for this usability test was to match the services and features offered by Yahooligans! to the Korean lifestyle of the target market. At the 2000 HCI Conference, held in Korea, this usability test was conducted through the specialized “HCI loves kids” section, customized for feedback on new software and products for kids. This usability test also tested for style, image and content preferences of Korean kids for the Korean site compared that of the US Yahooligans! site. The test was made to be an easy and quick online survey to give general options, with specific examples, for the participants to choose from. The results of this usability test will help to develop a more user-friendly site for Korean kids, through the development of customized graphics and contents, maintaining current Yahooligans! design layout guidelines.

The online survey used for this usability test can be found at the following link:
http://survey.yahoo.co.kr/kids/
To see screenshots of the online survey, refer to the Appendix at the end of this report.


Study Design

Goals

The primary goal of this study was to localize the design and content of Yahooligans! for the Korean market. This assessment was made through the preferences users expressed for given design and content choices. This research was conducted using an online survey during an HCI conference held for three days in Korea.

Methodology

Oneline Survey

Brief Description: 40 respondents completed the online survey, which was made up of 26 questions. These 26 questions were split up as follows: The first thirteen questions were on the main pages and category services; the next three questions were on encyclopedias; the next four questions were on the Joke service; the next four questions were on the news service; the last two questions were on the Web-Celeb service. Their feedback came in the form of a variable numerical scale (ranging from 1-4 and 1-10), with each number corresponding to a design or content choice.
Scale: Small specialized market group.
Depth: Feedback will be limited.
Appropriate Use: Since the respondent group was small, the people tested were from more affluent families and time taken for the survey was short, the results are not appropriate for most usability issues, but good for obtaining first-look type preference data.
 

Participants

There were 40 respondents in the online survey. Two computers were used in the “HCI loves kids” pavilion of the 2000 HCI Conference held Jan. 24-26, 2000 in Korea to conduct the online survey.

Characteristics of the respondents include:

  • 47% elementary school students, 43% regular conference attendees and 10% education software developers
  • 55% female vs. 45% male
  • Elementary students were not regular internet users, while regular conference attendees and education software developers were regular internet users

Results

Background information was collected from respondents concerning internet usage. The online survey gave specific data on the preferences of respondents.

Main page design

Q1. Which of the following designs do you prefer?
Respondents selected the second main page design of three choices.

The three designs consisted of the original green blob design(Fig 1-1. Main design 1), the second was a blue water design(Fig 1-2. Main design 2) and the third was a new different style red color design(Fig 1-3.  Main design 3).

Fig 1-1. Main Design 1
Fig 1-2. Main Design 2
Fig 1-3. Main Design 3

Q2. Which service would you click on first on the following page?
Respondents selected jokes as their number one service choice. Icon style and image was not given any weighting for this question, focus was purely on the service selected.

Q3. Which service would you like to see in the future?
Respondents selected games as their number one service choice. Games are very popular among elementary school students in general, and is one of the major reasons for their using the internet. The internet is not yet being utilized for research information for students to use for school work.

Q4. What do you think of marking banner ads with “AD”?
Respondents thought that it was a good idea to mark banner ads with “AD” to distinguish it from regular service banners. Yahoo! Korea would like to break the traditional advertising standard by making it easier for kids to distinguish between advertising and regular site information.

Q5. How often do you use the internet for doing homework?
Respondents selected “Never” as their number one choice. There is still not a wide usage of the internet for research and homework. Parents and teachers don’t encourage kids to use the internet as much as they could, and Yahoo! Korea would like to make it easier for them to teach their kids to use the internet for research using our online Yahoo! guides. In teaching the parents and teachers with our online guides, Yahoo! Korea would like to encourage them to give their kids more internet related homework and problems for them to solve on their own, which will in turn make kids more comfortable in using the internet more often.

Q6. Which internet category do you like?
Respondents selected computers and games as their number one choice. This was largely due to the popularity of computers games among elementary school students.

Q7. Which color do you like most?
Respondents selected blue as the most popular among a choice of 9 different colors. Yellow was the second favorite color. Blue is popular in general, which represents safety and refreshment, while yellow is more popular among kids than the general public.

Q8-13. Which icon do you think best matches the given category?
All icon matching questions utilized icon designs from the US, Japan and made for Korea custom designs. The first icon design is from the US, the second icon design is from Japan, while numbers 3 and 4 are custom-made icons designs for Korea. The general preference was for the Japanese icon designs, while the US designs were favored the least, mainly due to cultural differences with the US. You can see the icon designs in the Appendix. (Appendix: Category Icons)

Fig 2. Category Icons

Encyclopedia

Q14. What purpose do you have for using an encyclopedia?
Respondents selected curiosity as their main reason for using an encyclopedia. This question was given to gauge interest for a new encyclopedia/almanac service for kids that we are going to provide in the future. (Fig 3-1. Encyclopedia 1)

Fig 3-1. Encyclopedia 1

Q15. What type of data do you search for when using an encyclopedia?
Respondents selected images as their number one choice. Kids relate to images more than to text and streaming multimedia.

Q16. Which font size do you prefer?
Respondents selected big fonts as their number one choice. The service uses small fonts at present and will likely offer big fonts for kids.(Fig 3-2. Encyclopedia 2)

Fig 3-2. Encyclopedia 2

Jokes

Q17. How often do you tell jokes?
Respondents selected sometimes as their number one choice. Jokes are very common among elementary school students, but the style and type of jokes are very different from that in the US.

Q18. How fun do you find these pages?
Respondents thought that the pages were very fun. The kids found this page to be more fun than the adults who evaluated the same page. (Fig 4-1. Jokes 1)

Fig 4-1. Jokes 1

Q19. Would you want to post your own jokes to this page?
Respondents generally wanted to send their own jokes. The main reason for people choosing “Don’t know” was that they could not type very well, or else were very unfamiliar with the internet.

Q20. Do you find the sending jokes function difficult to use?
Respondents selected “Very easy” as the number one choice. The main reason for those selecting “Difficult” was their poor typing skill, which made it difficult, or time-consuming for them to write and send their own jokes. (Fig 4-2. Jokes 2)

Fig 4-2. Jokes 2

News

Q21. Which news page layout do you prefer?
Respondents selected Headline news as their number one choice. The difference between the two styles is that the headline news style is the standard Yahooligans! News style with headlines for each story, while the current news style gives headlines and a brief excerpt from the article.

Q22. Do you use the news search function?
Respondents selected “Never” as the number one choice. Kids were found to not use this function very frequently, or not at all. They preferred to explore for news stories themselves, as they did not know specific news topics to search for.

Q23. Which news service do you like?
Respondents selected entertainment as their number one choice. Kids showed a wide variety of interests, with sports and sciences as their second and third choices respectively. (Fig 5. News)

Fig 5. News

Q24. Would you like to see NIE used on news pages?
Respondents selected “Don’t know” as their number one choice. Many adults did not know what the NIE service was, while most kids have heard of it. The NIE service gives a brief description for the news article and is commonly used for school projects and assignments. NIE will most likely be used for the news services.

Web-Celeb

Q25. What type of celebrities would you like to see on Web-Celeb?
Respondents selected singers as their number one choice. Singers are the most popular entertainers in Korea in general and will be included in this service. Athletes will also be included in the Web-Celeb service along with the standard actor category, as they are very popular among the general public in Korea. (Fig 6. Web-Celeb)

Fig 6. Web-Celeb

Q26. What kind of data would you like to see on Web-Celeb?
Respondents selected pictures and movies and their number one choice. Kids preferred pictures and movies by far over any other data, and thus will be featured in this service.