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Seminarski cmd Seminarski cmd Document Transcript

  • Introduction In this paper I will write about Computer-mediatedDiscourse (CMD), which author Susan C. Herring presented in herstudy. She introduced this type of discourse as a type ofcommunication which occurs in the interaction of human beings bytransmitting messages through networked computers. The focus ofComputer-mediated communication (CMC) is the language andmethods used. This communication is text-based, which means that it istyped on a computer keyboard and read on a computer screen. Thisinteraction is mainly between persons from different locations andtheir main property is that they are visually presented. It takes placein a unique environment, which is not influenced by any othercontact, except verbal. Interactive networking is originally designed in the UnitedStates in the late 1960s to make the transfer of data easier solely inthe interest of national defense. Shortly after that, in the early1970s, computer scientists started using this kind ofcommunication, as well as academic and business users in eliteuniversities and organizations, and from 1990s, it started beingused commercially. The first wide-area network, the US defensedepartment sponsored ARPANET, was replaced in the early 1980sby the global network Internet. 150 million users were estimatedfrom January 1999. In 1984, linguist Naomi Baron published anarticle “Computer-mediated communication as a force in languagechange”, which was accompanied by Denise Murray’s research ona real-time messaging system at IBM and Kerstin SeverinsonEklundhs study of the Swedish COM conferencing system.However, the breakthrough happened with the publication ofKathleen Ferrara, Hans Brunner, and Greg Whittemores“Interactive written discourse as an emergent register” in 1991.Most people thought that computer-mediated communication isanonymous, impersonal, fragmented and they weren’t aware ofdifferent types of it and its complexity in various situations. Susan C. Herring organized her work in four sectionsrepresenting areas of research of computer-mediatedcommunication.
  • Classification of CMD The researchers of CMD consider it as electronic “mediumeffects”, not seeing it as a form of writing or typing. They claimthat it is similar to writing because the text can be edited andformatted in asynchronous modes, however, other aspects of CMDdiffer therefore it cannot be easily classified with writing orspeaking. CMD is usually faster than typical writing and usuallyslower than speaking, also, multiple participants can communicatesimultaneously which is difficult in any other interaction becauseof the limitation of human cognition. Moreover, CMD is often usedin communication with unseen and unknown persons while it isdeveloped into private conversations. In a face-to-facecommunication, information is available through visual, gestural,auditorial channels. On the other hand, CMD is transmitted through visualchannel only, in typed text exclusively. Nevertheless, CMD is arich medium, which is best described by the phenomena of “virtualsex” in which physical intimacy is expressed in a text form. Synchronicity of participation is an important distinction.CMD can be asynchronous, which means that the participants donot have to be present at the same time, instead, the messages canbe stored and read at an other time (E-mail, for instance) and insynchronous CMD, the participants need to be logged onsimultaneously. The messages are scrolling off the screen as theyare being written and new ones replace them. (Real-time chat takesplace in official chat rooms of commercial service providers andthrough Internet Relay Chat-IRC). In one-way transmission, the recipients do not knowwhether the message is addressed to them until it arrives, it is sendas a single unit, while the two-way transmission (face-to-face andtelephone conversations) allows both participants to hear themessage as it is being produced. There is also a CMD two-waytransmission, in which participants’ screen split into two or moresections, where are the words being shown as they are typed. ISQ(I seek you) protocol is an example of it.
  • Classification of some common CMD modes according tosynchronicity and transmition: Two-way One-way transmission transmission UNIX “talk”; Chat (IRC, webchat, etc.);Synchronous VAX “phone”; MUDs and MOOs ICQ E-mail; e-mail-based systemsAsynchronous (listserv discussion lists, Usenet - newsgroups, etc.) MUDs (Multi-User Dimensions or Multi-User Dungeons,from the early association of MUDs with the role-play adventuregame Dungeons and Dragons) and MOOs (MUDs, ObjectOriented) are text-based virtual reality environments in whichindividuals can navigate and create text-based descriptions andobjects. . Other properties of CMD are message size and persistence(how long the message remains visible to the participants), whatcategories of communication commands a system makes available,the ease with which a system allows users to incorporate portionsof previous messages in their responses, whether a system allowsmessages to be sent anonymously and whether it allows users tofilter out messages from others selectively. Another useful classification is whether it is culturallyrecognized. Popular modes such as private e-mail, listserv mailinglists, Usenet newsgroups, IRC, and MUDs are socially andtechnologically defined. Audio video or graphic channels also haveeffect on language use. Listserv mailing list and Usenet groups areasynchronous, as they are multiparticipant groups in whichmessages are posted and can be read later. Angularity is alsocommon in these groups, as well as “flaming” or addressingsomeone with a hostile content, because listserv participants mustsubscribe to mailing list, providing their name and e-mail andmessages are publicly posted for everyone to read. For using MUD,it is required to have better programming skills, therefore, itsculture is more sophisticated than that of IRC.
  • Linguistic Structure It is said that the language used in computer-mediateddiscourse is less complex, correct and less coherent than standardwritten language. The author mentioned that Baron 1984 predictedthat the users of CMD would use fewer subordinate clauses and anarrower range of vocabulary, and that the expressive functions oflanguage could be diminished. Computer-mediated language often contains nonstandardfeatures, however, those are considerably intentional. It is becauseof the need for decreasing the typing effort, to mimic spokenlanguage features in order to express in a suitable way. Users elidesubject pronouns, determiners and auxiliaries, instead they useabbreviations, do not correct typos and do not use case charactersin a proper way. Nonetheless, CMD can also be very formal, forexample, in professional interaction, containing subordinate andcomplement clauses, the passive voice, heavy noun phrases andnominalizations.Les1: as it stands now, meeting on weds?Les2: instead of tuesBrian1: idiot Hess seemed to think you were there tues morningBrian2: thot that mtg from 9 to 10 would solveBrian2: thot that mtg from 9 to 10 would solveBrian3: if you not in ny Im going to have mtg changed to wedne. Accordingly, CMD has similar features to oralcommunication features, concerning synchronicity, because it doesnot leave much time for message planning which leads to lowerlexical density, ratio of nouns to verbs and use of attributiveadjectives. On the other hand, asynchronous CMD leaves more timefor constructing and editing messages.
  • Interaction Management CMD is said to be interactionally incoherent because of thelimits in the computer messaging system bound to turn-taking. Ascompared to CMD, spoken language can be fluent if there are nogaps in speech. Disrupted turn adjacency caused by the fact thatmessages are posted in the order received by the system, withoutregard for what they are responding to and a lack of simultaneousfeedback because of reduced audiovisual cues, are two propertieswhich make a computer inconvenient for interaction management. When a message begins with an asterisk (***), it means thatthe participant joined or left the channel. It is generated by thesystem automatically. There are several ways in which these obstacles can beavoided.[1] <ashna> hi jatt[2] *** Signoff: puja (EOF From client)[3] <Dave-G> kally I was only joking around[4] <Jatt> ashna: hello?[5] <kally> dave-g it was funny[6] <ashna> how are u jatt[7] <LUCKMAN> ssa all12[8] <Dave-G> kally you da woman![9] <Jatt> ashna: do we know eachother?. Im ok how are you[10 *** LUCKMAN has left channel #PUNJAB][11 *** LUCKMAN has joined channel #punjab][12 <kally> dave-g good stuff:)][13 <Jatt> kally: so hows school life, life in geneal, love life,] family life?[14 <ashna> jatt no we dont know each other, I fine][15 <Jatt> ashna: where r ya from?]
  • One of them is addressivity, that is, addressing a personindividually makes it possible to track responses more efficiently.Quoting can also be helpful, in a way that it creates an illusion ofadjacency. It juxtaposes an initiation and response within a singlemessage. A single message can occasionally contain two or moreconversational moves which are physically adjacent but notfunctionally. Also, sender may have more to say than it can fit in asingle message and continues his turn in an immediately followingmessage, which can be a problem if it is interrupted by the otherperson’s response. This can be evaded if a special character wasappended in order to mark the end of a turn. In addition, a personcould be chosen to appoint turns by naming the participants whoare raising their hands sequently.[1] <ashna> hi jatt[4] <Jatt> ashna: hello?[6] <ashna> how are u jatt[9] <Jatt> ashna: do we know eachother?. Im ok how are you[14 <ashan> jatt no we dont know each other, I fine][15 <Jatt> ashna: where r ya from?][3] <Dave-G> kally I was only joking around[5] <kally> dave-g it was funny[8] <Dave-G> kally you da woman![12 <kally> dave-g good stuff:)]
  • Social Practice In the beginnings of CMD, some saw it as a pour socialmedium and some as a way of communicating freely anddemocratically. Nonetheless, everyone agreed it was a rich sourceof data for the study of social practice. The language used dependson social factor such as users’ demographics and the context of thesituation. In spite of participants’ information being available, such asgender, age, class, race etc, it is not necessarily true, because theInternet is an anonymous medium. Geographic location is alsodifficult to determine. Even in racially oriented debates, the racialidentity may not derived from the language they use, but only fromthe content of their messages. Information concerning participant’seducational level and age is revealed by the sophistication of hislanguage use and by the experience he shows in the messagecontent. Usually the most obvious information is gender, which canbe inferred from the nickname he uses and unconsciously, byengaging in stereotyped behaviors and using a specific messagelength, assertiveness, politeness and aggression. Behavior is shapedby participants’ previous experience and influenced by thesituation, whether the participation structure is one-to-one, one-to-many or many-to-many. Norms of practice are developed over timeand they determine what kind of behavior is socially desirable. Purposes of communication (recreational, professional,pedagogical, creative, etc.) also affect the linguistic variation –contractions are often used in “fun” topic, and less in serious topicson an academic linguistics discussion list. Surprisingly, CMD in a text-only form effectively helpsinteracting between people, because using it users can expressthemselves by carefully choosing words and showing less of theirinsecurity. Lacking other channels but visual, CMD developedstrategies to supersede social cues. Computer users createdemoticons to represent facial expressions, composed of ASCII
  • characters (‘’ smile, ‘;)’ wink and so on). Moreover, physicalexpressions can be represented textually (<grin>, *yawn* etc.). Insights into computer-mediated discourse that have beenmade, showed the existence of virtual communities, which opposesthe theory that interaction via Internet is egalitarian. It has alsoproved the dominance of white, middle-class, English-speakingmales and their administrative control over the Internet. Genderpresence is disproportional, in favor of male participants. Theangularity of male participants can discourage females fromresponding. Discourse analysts consider the dominance of the Englishlanguage disturbing, because of the possible effects on the spreadof US values and cultural practices. Yoon finds that young peoplein Korea tend to take the dominance and importance of Englishlanguage for granted and that the reason for this lies in thesymbolic power of the technology transmitted through mass media. As we ascertained, computer-mediated interaction is barelyegalitarian, therefore it can become a battlefield for confrontationof opposite opinions. It presents a large field of investigation fordiscourse analysts because it is full of discursive negotiation andexpression of social relations, both symmetrical and asymmetrical.
  • Conclusions Computer-mediated communication is mostly influenced bysocial and cultural factors not only by computer technology.Because of this, CMD requires multiple approaches to analysisfrom different academic disciplines and subfields. This diversityrepresents its strength. Not all levels can be spotted in spoken and writteninteractions and this is where CMD intervenes. In his overview, theauthor has focused on issues of categorization, linguistic structure,interaction management and social practice. There are other topicsthat can be extended on their own, such as children’s learning anduse of CMD, pedagogical CMD and cross-cultural CMD, thereforethey are not contained in this study. The development in the computer technology is inevitablyfollowed by a growing need for CMD; therefore it makes itimportant for the future. Altering in understanding of thiscommunication will also be needed as CMD is expanding by usingaudio and visual channels.
  • Reference • Schiffrin, Deborah, Deborah Tannen and Heidi E. Hamilton (2003), The Handbook of Discourse Analysis; Herring, Susan C. Computer-mediated Discourse