- Exploring Mental Models for Application in Networking Applications, Telephony and Environments


Guidelines --> Contemporary Legends

Contemporary legends, also known as urban legends, urban myths, folklore etc. are stories which are generally untrue, but are often told as if they were true. The narrator generally does not know that the story is a myth, but will have heard the story as something which happened to someone who knows someone s/he knows.

The stories are sometimes just jokes but generally reflect on some common anxiety in society (or within the group where the story circulates). One such example is hoax virus warnings which flourish on the Internet. Their existence points to a user population which is wary of contracting computer viruses from computer networks.

Contemporary legends can also be used for strengthening group cohesion, and in these cases, the stories can be used to gather useful vocabulary and beliefs of the intended user group.

In order to gather contemporary legends, check your email inbox and search the internet - there are many sites listing contemporary legends.

Last changed by L.Sheeran@cs.ucl.ac.uk on 30 August 2000