The roles and functions of Wattpad towards writers in Malaysia / Nur Syuhaidah Ayub
Reading materials like books are no longer limited to paper-based publication but rather it has been infused with the utilisation of technology, including the availability of many writing applications that can be used to write. Wattpad is a website that enables writers to publish new user-generated...
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|Reading materials like books are no longer limited to paper-based publication but rather it has been infused with the utilisation of technology, including the availability of many writing applications that can be used to write. Wattpad is a website that enables writers to publish new user-generated stories. It aims to create a social community for both amateur and established writers with readers by offering free and paid reading as well as ease of use. Although past literature posits that such application has received worldwide recognition, the use of Wattpad has yet to receive much response in Malaysia as opposed to other countries. This study thus explores the roles and functions of Wattpad particularly for Malaysian writers as the main users of the application. This was achieved using qualitative analysis obtained from interview sessions with 11 informants that comprises of Malaysian writers who use Wattpad for their writing needs. The results indicated that Wattpad has various roles and functions towards Malaysian writers as well as the local creative writing industry. In this regard, the roles of Wattpad can be divided into four fractions, namely as a community of writers and readers, collecting creative writing works, facilitating the transition from traditional to digital writing, and supporting the Malaysian writing industry. Meanwhile, its functions can be categorised into three groups, which are for the readers, writers, and publishers. Such findings show that Wattpad can compete with other competitors in establishing itself as an online platform that facilitates writing and reading worldwide.