At a different tempo: What goes wrong in online cross-cultural group chat?

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cross-cultural communication has become increasingly prevalent in organizations and education systems. Such communication often takes place in a distributed fashion, and many studies have examined the impact of computer-mediated communication (CMC) on distributed cross-cultural groups. For example the literature points to cultural factors that could cause communication failures, such as individualism vs. collectivism, high context vs. low context, and power distance. We contend that language proficiency, a basic and fundamental difference between people from English speaking countries and other countries, is often neglected by researchers. Therefore, we have begun a detailed investigation of cross-cultural group chat. We chose text chat as a target technology because previous studies reported it as non-native speakers' preferred choice for CMC. Our study revealed that language proficiency played a pivotal role in cross-cultural group chat. When people conversed at different levels of proficiency, turn taking was severely disrupted, causing confusion and neglect of discussion points. We also found that some native speakers hold back ideas to accommodate the non-fluency of non-native speakers, slowing down the group process and outcomes. Working from these findings, we discuss possible designs that could assist both non-native and native speakers in cross-cultural group chat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGROUP'12 - Proceedings of the ACM 2012 International Conference on Support Group Work
Pages145-154
Number of pages10
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 4 2012
Event2012 17th ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work, GROUP 2012 - Sanibel Island, FL, United States
Duration: Oct 27 2012Oct 31 2012

Publication series

NameGROUP'12 - Proceedings of the ACM 2012 International Conference on Support Group Work

Other

Other2012 17th ACM International Conference on Supporting Group Work, GROUP 2012
CountryUnited States
CitySanibel Island, FL
Period10/27/1210/31/12

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications

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  • Cite this

    Li, N., & Rosson, M. B. (2012). At a different tempo: What goes wrong in online cross-cultural group chat? In GROUP'12 - Proceedings of the ACM 2012 International Conference on Support Group Work (pp. 145-154). (GROUP'12 - Proceedings of the ACM 2012 International Conference on Support Group Work). https://doi.org/10.1145/2389176.2389200