Type Your Listenership: an Exploration of Listenership in Instant Messages
Tannen, Deborah F
This study investigates listenership in Instant Messages among five Korean females including the researcher via KakaoTalk messenger (KakaoTalk), a free instant messaging application popular in South Korea. The goal is 1) to explore listenership practices in written digital discourse; 2) to elucidate the vital role of listenership in the co-construction of digital conversation; and 3) to see how the medium KakaoTalk, age-related social relations among friends, and the Korean language are intertwined to express listenership in Instant Messages. The study extends previous research on minimal responses, conversational styles, and framing phenomena in spoken conversation to written digital discourse. Specifically, 1) I demonstrate that minimal responses vary according to age, and listeners repeat them and change the forms of minimal responses as support work; 2) building on Tannen's (2005) concept of machine gun questions, I identify what I call machine gun listenership, consisting of both machine gun questions as well as machine gun answers to indicate enthusiasm and interest in speakers' talk; and 3) drawing on theories of framing including Tannen and Wallat (1987), Tannen (2006), and Gordon (2008, 2009), I show how listeners use framing phenomena such as reframing, discursive frame shifts, re-alignment toward previous messages, and rekeying through contextualization cues like parentheses and an animated sticker. I also suggest a system of primary and secondary floors that helps illuminate the way participants shift between speaker and listener roles. This study thus extends concepts and insights developed in the study of listenership in spoken interaction to written digital conversation conducted on instant messaging.
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Instant Messaging in Korean Families: Creating Family through the Interplay of Photos, Videos, and Text Choe, Hanwool (Georgetown University, 2020)Extending previous research on family interaction (e.g., Tannen, Kendall, and Gordon 2007; Gordon 2009) and online multimodal discourse (e.g., Gordon forthcoming), I use interactional sociolinguistics to analyze instant ...