Drawing from the fields of discourse analysis, psycholinguistics, and computer-mediated communication, the present study examines how interlocutors in chatrooms adapt to the challenges of the online medium and how the medium affects the form and content of their discourse, specifically in terms of the types of referents that interlocutors use and how the referents are established. Four one-hour chatroom sessions were analyzed and compared with face-to-face conversations.
Differences between the contexts appear in such measures as the use of pronouns, repairs, and co-presence markers, which can be directly attributed to the limitations and requirements of the online medium.
Chatroom participants use a variety of strategies to negotiate good-enough representations of current topics. They refer to objects in terms of linguistic and physical co-presence and rely on assumptions of community membership to create a context for referents. They apparently create mental models of chatrooms to provide a framework for negotiating meanings.
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 48/02M, Masters Abstracts International|
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