Adaptability in online consumer reviews: Exploring genre dynamics and interactional choices

A1 Originalartikel i en vetenskaplig tidskrift (referentgranskad)

Interna författare/redaktörer

Publikationens författare: Tuija Virtanen
Förläggare: Elsevier
Publiceringsår: 2017
Tidskrift: Journal of Pragmatics
Volym: 116
Artikelns första sida, sidnummer: 77
Artikelns sista sida, sidnummer: 90
eISSN: 1879-1387


This paper explores ‘adaptability’ (Verschueren, 1999) as manifest in
online consumer reviews, an increasingly popular and non-trivial mode of
computer-mediated communication which has so far attracted little interest
among linguists of various orientations (but see Vásquez, 2014). The focus is on
genre dynamics in reviews of linguistics textbooks, which lie at the nexus of
academic and promotional genres. As writers of reviews will have to grapple
with some degree of ‘context collapse’ (Marwick and boyd, 2010), the article
includes an investigation of audience design and efforts to socially
authenticate reviewer personae. Findings indicate a major divide in the data
between topic-oriented and author-oriented reviews. In contrast, audience-oriented
reviews are practically missing; rather, imagined audiences tend to appear in
the texts implicitly as similar to the reviewer, suggesting conceptions of a
mass audience as well as specific groupings of general audiences. On top of the
technological and communicative affordances of the retail site, I propose a
notion of ‘pragmatic’ affordances, tied to the ingredients of Verschueren’s
pragmatic theory of adaptability, i.e., its locus, processes and status. The
study increases the understanding of language as an adaptive tool in
self-commodifying online environments.

Senast uppdaterad 2020-27-09 vid 03:33