Politeness theory and computer-mediated communication: A sociolinguistic approach to analyzing relational messages

D. A. Morand, R. J. Ocker

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

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

This conceptual paper suggests how politeness theory by P. Brown and S. Levinson (1987) - well known in anthropological and linguistic literatures -can contribute to the study of role relations in computer-mediated communication. Politeness, phrasing things so as to show respect and esteem for the face of others, occurs throughout social interchange. The paper reviews politeness theory and enumerates specific linguistic indices of politeness. It then discusses how recognition of the central role of face-work in social interchange can enhance understanding of why and where emotion-work might occur in CMC, how such emotion-work (in the form of politeness) can be reliably observed and quantitatively measured at a linguistic level of analysis, and how the distribution of politeness phenomena is systematically related to variables of interest in CMC research - such as status, cohesion, impersonality, friendship, and communicative efficiency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003
EditorsRalph H. Sprague
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)0769518745, 9780769518749
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2003
Event36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003 - Big Island, United States
Duration: Jan 6 2003Jan 9 2003

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003

Other

Other36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003
CountryUnited States
CityBig Island
Period1/6/031/9/03

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications

Cite this

Morand, D. A., & Ocker, R. J. (2003). Politeness theory and computer-mediated communication: A sociolinguistic approach to analyzing relational messages. In R. H. Sprague (Ed.), Proceedings of the 36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003 [1173660] (Proceedings of the 36th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2003). Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. https://doi.org/10.1109/HICSS.2003.1173660