Linguistic style accommodation shapes impression formation and rapport in computer-mediated communication

Muir, K, Joinson, A, Cotterill, R and Dewdney, N (2017) 'Linguistic style accommodation shapes impression formation and rapport in computer-mediated communication.' Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 36 (5). pp. 525-548. ISSN 0261-927X

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1177/0261927X17701327

Abstract

Communication accommodation theory predicts that social power plays an important role in influencing communicative behaviors. Previous research suggests these effects extend to linguistic style, thought to be a nonconscious aspect of communication. Here, we explore if these effects hold when individuals converse using a medium limited in personal cues, computer-mediated communication. We manipulated social power in instant messaging conversations and measured subsequent interpersonal impressions. Low power induced greater likelihood of linguistic style accommodation, across between- (Study 1) and within-subjects (Study 2) experiments. Accommodation by those in a low-power role had no impact on impressions formed by their partner. In contrast, linguistic style accommodation by individuals in a high-power role was associated with negative interpersonal impressions formed by their lower power partner. The results show robust effects of power in shaping language use across computer-mediated communication. Furthermore, the interpersonal effects of linguistic accommodation depend on the conversational norms of the social context.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: communication accommodation theory, computer-mediated communication, power, linguistic style, impression formation, linguistics, computer mediated communication, interpersonal control, test construction
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: School of Sciences
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2020 17:27
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2020 18:45
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