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School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Guest Speaker Seminar: Caroline Tagg

When: Wednesday, November 2, 2022, 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Where: Bancroft:1.01.1

Dr Caroline Tagg (The Open University) will give a talk entitled Mobile conversations in context: managing relationships at a distance.

Abstract. In this talk, I discuss the findings of a research project, Mobile conversations in context (MoCo), which focuses on communication mediated by WhatsApp and other mobile messaging apps. It combines the interactional analysis of mobile messages with interviews and time-use diaries to explore how mobile conversations intertwine with the offline activities and encounters in which interlocutors are engaged. The findings suggest that, for these participants, mobile messaging
facilitates connections not straightforwardly through heightening co-presence but because of the distance afforded by mobile messaging, enabling people to purposefully select what they say, to whom, and when. This has parallels with the ‘Goldilocks effect’ identified by Miller (2016), whereby people use social media to keep people close, but not too close. Overall, the MoCo findings contribute new insights into how people harness mobile messaging to maintain relational connections in the course of everyday lives.


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