Making Friends in Cyberspace

Making Friends in Cyberspace Internet users participate in discussion groups by “posting” messages to one of the thousands of newsgroups carried by their Internet site. These newsgroups form what is commonly called the Usenet. Their messages, or “posts.” are then disseminated to all Internet sites carrying that newsgroup. Others may respond to a particular message, thereby creating a “thread or connected series of messages, or they may read without responding (called “lurking”). Newsgroups are loosely organized into general categories, called “hierarchies,” such as “comp” (issues dealing with computing), “sci”(science), “rec” (recreation), “soc” (social and cultural activities), and “alt” (groups that cover such a wide range of topics that only the term “alternative” seems to include all of them). Thus, the group “alt.bonsai“ is devoted to the art of bonsai, while the group “rec.sport.hockey” is for hockey fans. Malcolm Parks (PhD, Michigan State University, 1976) is associate professor of Speech Communication at the University of Washington. Kory Floyd is a doctoral student in the Department of Communication at the University of Arizona. This research was supported by a grant from the Graduate School Fund of the University of Washington. Copyright 0 1996Journal o Communication 46(1), Winter. 0021-9916/96/$5.00 f Symposium /Making Friends in Cyberspace http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Communication Wiley

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 1996 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
0021-9916
eISSN
1460-2466
DOI
10.1111/j.1460-2466.1996.tb01462.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Internet users participate in discussion groups by “posting” messages to one of the thousands of newsgroups carried by their Internet site. These newsgroups form what is commonly called the Usenet. Their messages, or “posts.” are then disseminated to all Internet sites carrying that newsgroup. Others may respond to a particular message, thereby creating a “thread or connected series of messages, or they may read without responding (called “lurking”). Newsgroups are loosely organized into general categories, called “hierarchies,” such as “comp” (issues dealing with computing), “sci”(science), “rec” (recreation), “soc” (social and cultural activities), and “alt” (groups that cover such a wide range of topics that only the term “alternative” seems to include all of them). Thus, the group “alt.bonsai“ is devoted to the art of bonsai, while the group “rec.sport.hockey” is for hockey fans. Malcolm Parks (PhD, Michigan State University, 1976) is associate professor of Speech Communication at the University of Washington. Kory Floyd is a doctoral student in the Department of Communication at the University of Arizona. This research was supported by a grant from the Graduate School Fund of the University of Washington. Copyright 0 1996Journal o Communication 46(1), Winter. 0021-9916/96/$5.00 f Symposium /Making Friends in Cyberspace

Journal

Journal of CommunicationWiley

Published: Mar 1, 1996

References

  • Social penetration: The development of interpersonal relationships
    Altman, I.; Taylor, D.
  • Cyberspace: First steps
  • Communication yearbook
    Garton, L.; Wellman, B.
  • The Internet complete reference
    Hahn, H.; Stout, R.

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