Flow in Computer-Mediated Communication: Electronic Mail and Voice Mail Evaluation and Impacts

Linda Klebe Trevino, Jane Webster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

511 Scopus citations


This study investigates the effects of multiple variables on user evaluation and perceived impacts of electronic mail and voice mail systems. It introduces flow as an important construct that characterizes perceptions of employee interactions with computer-mediated communication technologies as more or less playful and exploratory. Flow is hypothesized to be influenced by the technology (higher for electronic mail), ease of use, and computer skill. It is also proposed that flow, type of technology, perceived technology characteristics (ease of use), and organizational factors (management support, communication partners' medium use) positively influence employee evaluations and perceived impacts. A field survey was conducted at a large health care firm that had recently adopted both electronic mail and voice mail. The LISREL results provide mixed support for the hypotheses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)539-573
Number of pages35
JournalCommunication Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1992


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Linguistics and Language

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