Article in:Internet Pragmatics: Online-First Articles
Multimodal strategies for balancing formality and informality
The role of kaomoji in online comment-reply interactions
This paper investigates multimodal strategies for balancing formality and informality online. The analysis of 300 comment-reply interactions on a recipe sharing site in Japan demonstrates that writers tend to avoid being overly formal or informal in their messages. For example, most comments and replies are written in polite forms but many incorporate some plain forms and colloquial expressions. Linguistic features, however, are not the only way through which the writers manage an appropriate level of formality and informality. The study examines the role of kaomoji or Japanese-style emoticons for socio-relational work online. Some kaomoji function locally as cues for interpreting the sentences featuring kaomoji. All kaomoji, including those with local functions, work to enhance the social presence of the writers on the screen via pictographic gaze and gestures, which increases the perception of intimate rapport. The findings underscore the importance of a multimodal perspective in examining how people handle social relationships online.
Keywords: multimodal analysis, formality-informality, kaomoji , emoticon, social presence, human agency, politeness, Japanese language
Published online: 17 March 2021
Al Rashdi, Fathiya
Andersen, Peter A., Laura K. Guerrero, and Susanne M. Jones
Baym, Nancy K.
Brown, Lucien, and Bodo Winter
Brown, Penelope, and Stephen C. Levinson
Cook, Haruko M.
Fouser, Robert, Narahiko Inoue, and Chungmin Lee
Geenan, Jarret, Sigrid Norris, and Boonyalakha Makboon
High, Andrew C., and Scott E. Caplan
Hijirida, Kyoko, and Ho-min Sohn
Irvine, Judith T.
Jewitt, Carey, Jeff Bezemer, and Kay O’Halloran
Kaneyasu, Michiko, and Minako Kuhara
Katsuno, Hirofumi, and Christine R. Yano
Kress, Gunther R.
Kress, Gunther R., and Theo van Leeuwen
Martinec, Radan, and Andrew Salway
Marwick, Alice E., and danah boyd
Matsuda, Paul K.
Schegloff, Emanuel A.
Schnoebelen, Tyler J.
Short, John S., Ederyn Williams, and Bruce Christie
Sugimoto, Taku, and James A. Levin
Yamada, Masanori, and Kanji Akahori