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Information Resources Management Association
Advancing the Concepts & Practices of Information Resources Management in Modern Organizations

Form and Function of Metacommunication in CMC

Form and Function of Metacommunication in CMC
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Author(s): Mirjam Weder (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Copyright: 2008
Pages: 17
Source title: Handbook of Research on Computer Mediated Communication
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Sigrid Kelsey (Louisiana State University, USA) and Kirk St.Amant (East Carolina University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-863-5.ch041


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Online communities such as newsgroups and mailinglists are constructed around a common interest and a shared set of norms that regulates communication. These communicative norms can be studied either by observing the communicative practice of the participants or by analyzing what group members say about correct and appropriate behavior in that community (referred to as metacommunication). This chapter investigates the differing roles of metacommunication in online communities such as mailinglists, newsgroups, and online forums with an aim to provide a basis for the future analysis of group behavior. It explains how members are instructed about correct and appropriate communicative behavior, and how various evaluative means of metacommunication can negotiate these norms and contribute toward community building.

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