The Corporate Blog as an Emerging Genre of Computer-mediated Communication

The Corporate Blog as an Emerging Genre of Computer-mediated Communication

By Cornelius Puschmann
Book Description

Digital technology is increasingly impacting how we keep informed, how we communicate professionally and privately, and how we initiate and maintain relationships with others. The function and meaning of new forms of computer-mediated communication (CMC) is not always clear to users on the onset and must be negotiated by communities, institutions and individuals alike. Are chatrooms and virtual environments suitable for business communication? Is email increasingly a channel for work-related, formal communication and thus "for old people", as especially young Internet users flock to Social Networking Sites (SNSs)? Cornelius Puschmann examines the linguistic and rhetorical properties of the weblog, another relatively young genre of CMC, to determine its function in private and professional (business) communication. He approaches the question of what functions blogs realize for authors and readers and argues that corporate blogs, which, like blogs by private individuals, are a highly diverse in terms of their form, function and intended audience, essentially mimic key characteristics of private blogs in order to appear open, non-persuasive and personal, all essential qualities for companies that wish to make a positive impression on their constituents.

Table of Contents
  • The corporate blog as an emerging genre of computer-mediated communication: features, constraints, discourse situation
    • Introduction
      • ``Wait, what's a corporate blog?''
      • Issues of definition
      • Methods, data and approach
      • Preliminary theoretical considerations
      • Aims and scope
      • Structure of this thesis
    • Formal, technical and pragmatic aspects of blogging
      • Proposing a hierarchy of community, purpose and text
      • A classification of blogs following Herring
        • Medium factors
          • M1: Synchronicity
          • M2: Message transmission
          • M3: Persistence of transcript
          • M4: Size of message buffer
          • M5: Channels of communication
          • M6: Anonymous messaging
          • M7: Private messaging
          • M8: Filtering
          • M9: Quoting
          • M10: Message format
        • Situation factors
          • S1: Participation structure
          • S2: Participant characteristics
          • S3: Purpose
          • S4: Topic or theme
          • S5: Tone
          • S6: Activity
      • Users and uses of private blogs
        • Update others on activities and whereabouts
        • Express opinions and influence others
        • Seek others' opinion and feedback
        • Thinking by writing
        • Release emotional tension
      • Blogs and the organization of time
      • The blog as a virtual discourse situation
      • Canonical software features of blog publishing tools
      • Chronology in data and discourse
      • Blog macrostructure
      • Blog microstructure
      • Self-directed discourse and the deictic center
      • Audience design
      • Audience scope
      • Ego blogging
      • Topic blogging
      • Differences in function and intended audience
      • Audience mismatch
      • Conversational maxims, relevance and politeness in blogs
    • The corporate blog as an emerging genre
      • Aspects of organizational communication
      • Issues of corporate communications on the Internet
      • Origins of corporate blogging
      • Perceived advantages of corporate blogging
      • A typology of corporate blog subgenres
        • Product blogs
        • Image blogs
        • Executive blogs
        • Employee blogs / blog hubs
      • A comparison of private and corporate blogs
      • Pragmatic aspects of corporate blogs
      • Flogging
      • Linguistic aspects of corporate blogs
    • Corporate blogging case studies
      • One Louder (Microsoft)
      • Jonathan's Blog (Sun Microsystems)
    • Discussion
    • CBC/Corporati corpus statistics
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