Getting started with Gathertown for CSCW 2022

CSCW 2022 attendees can use Gathertown to meet and interact during poster/ demo receptions, and watch the pre-recorded paper talks (CSCW TV). A few days before the conference begins, registered attendees will receive a link to log onto GatherTown.

The different Gathertown functions are briefly explained on this page.

There are three main Gather Space: Main Hall, Poster/demo rooms and Viewing room (CSCW TV).

Poster/Demo Reception

We will host the posters/demos reception in a Taiwan-themed Gathertown. Presenters will have virtual booths that they will present from, and attendees can wander between booths based on their interests. Posters are embedded into interactive objects, which are sorted and grouped into Meta Room A (No.1-No.24) and Meta Room B (No.25-No.48)

Meta Room A


Meta Room B

As you approach a poster/demo booth, you will see a preview; click x and you will be able to view the entire poster; enter the private space in front of the poster and you will join the presenter’s conference.

CSCW TV

CSCW TV will play through the duration of the conference on Wednesday through Friday (Taiwan local time). This will be a “single track”, meaning only one talk would play at a time, and they will play “around the clock.” This will allow attendees to drop-in to gather together and interact at times that are convenient for and interesting to you.

Instructions for Gathertown

Account setup

To start, please open the link that we sent to your email address when you registered for the conference. Please sign up using the exact same email address that you used to register for the conference. When you first sign in to GatherTown, please set your “publishing name’ (aka the name you intend to commonly go by in professional / academic spaces ). “Anonymous” attendees will be politely asked to rename themselves and may be removed from the platform on continued non-compliance.

When you first enter GatherTown your browser may ask permission to use your camera and microphone. Please select ALLOW, as this is how you will be able to speak to others, and how they will be able to see you.

Next, you are spawned into the CSCW 2022 Main Hall. Here you will find the Service Desk, Private social areas and three portals to the Instruction room, Viewing Room and Poster & Demo Room.

Remember, use your arrow keys to explore. You can navigate an avatar using the arrow key, or WASD. Alternatively, double click on the map to move to a specific location.

Doors are portals which you can move through into the next room.

To exit, close your browser. When you open Gather later or the next day, you will appear in the location you left off at.

Interacting with others

To interact with others, position your avatar near others. You will be able to see and hear any other attendees who are near you. You also will be able to see or hear any attendees who are in a private chat area with you, such as a table or private room.

If you need to find someone, you can also search for and select a person’s name in the Participants panel, and from their info card, send a private message to them. You can also right click on a person and select Send chat.

Interacting with objects

There are interactive objects in the space, such as posters, demos, videos, and message boards. If you walk up to an object and see it glow yellow, the object is interactive. Press ‘x’ on your keyboard to interact with the object. When you are done, you can click the x at the top-right of the screen or press ‘x’ on your keyboard to close the object.

Keyboard shortcuts

There are a few shortcuts on your keyboard that may be useful.

  • x interact with objects (presentations)
  • g ghost mode: if you hold down the G key on your keyboard, you will enter “ghost mode” allowing you to walk through other people
  • Zoom in and Zoom out

If you are not familiar with GatherTown, please click on the link below to learn more about GatherTown. If you have any trouble with gather.town, please walk up to a student volunteer live. If there is no student volunteer available, please contact sv2022@cscw.acm.org.

Explore the Space (gather.town)

Accessibility on Gathertown

Gathertown remains limited in terms of accessibility for our low vision and blind colleagues. Though, Gathertown does have a unique “Follow” and “Request to Lead” feature that allows you to follow other players’ avatars in the virtual space. In the case of low-vision and blind attendees, we can assign you a “Gathertown Guide” who will coordinate with you upon your entry to Gathertown and guide you to the areas of the conference in which you’d like to participate. Due to the 24/7 nature of CSCW this year, we cannot always have a Gathertown Guide available. If you are a low vision attendee of CSCW, please indicate this in your registration or email the Equity & Accessibility Co-chairs directly equity2022@cscw.acm.org. We will arrange the guide at a time of your choosing.

Gathertown utilizes a “Smart Zoom” feature which automatically adjusts the Gathertown map to “give you the best experience.” Low-vision users may prefer a zoomed-in version of the map. To turn off this feature, you have to click your name in the Bottom Command Bar, open User/Video Preferences, navigate to Space preferences and disable Smart Zoom, selecting a zoom level preference. Similarly, this is the settings area where you can reduce the animation displayed on the screen. This will help reduce unwanted motion.

For attendees who are deaf or hard of hearing, Gathertown does not have built in closed captioning. The talks streamed on CSCW TV in Gathertown are captioned by the authors who submit them. The Poster & Demo Reception uses Gathertown’s built in video and audio streaming feature, so if you attend this function, your best bet will be to use a live captioning tool such as WebRTC or Webcaptioner.

Gathertown Code of Conduct

To set norms for the conference activities, the following code of conduct applies. We expect all attendees to:

  • Follow all policies in the CSCW 2022 Code of Conduct, ACM Code of Ethics and ACM Policy Against Harassment. Attendees violating these policies may be asked to leave the conference without a refund at the sole discretion of the conference organizers.
  • Behave professionally. Harassment and sexist, racist, or exclusionary comments or jokes are not appropriate. Harassment includes harmful or prejudicial verbal or written comments related to gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, disability amd national orgin; inappropriate use of nudity and/or sexual images (including presentation slides); inappropriate depictions of violence (including presentation slides); deliberate intimidation, stalking or following; harassing photography or recording; sustained disruption of talks or other events.
  • Use one’s full name in the form “Firstname Lastname”, and not abbreviations.
  • Respect people’s names and pronouns when addressing them.
  • In all social interactions, before engaging, to introduce themselves. This helps us build our community; if we skip this step, it only supports existing relationships, rather than fostering new ones.
  • Not demand that someone enable their video. It is attendees’ choice whether to have their video on; there is also some evidence that audio-only conversations also reduce the cognitive load of processing social cues.

Attributions/ Resources

Gather Town - ASLO
​Gather.town (nam2021.org)
​Gather.town Basics | OrigamiUSA
Code of Conduct - ICER 2022 (acm.org)
Code of Conduct – PEARC21 (acm.org)
Code of Conduct – CHI PLAY 2021 (acm.org)
ESO - Code of Conduct for ESO Workshops & Conferences
Creativity & Cognition 2021 – 22-23 June 2021 (acm.org)