Monday, February 28

Do blogs offer a plattform for the "ideal speech situation"? VII

4.2.) Information patterns [not really relevant for me]

When there is two or more sided communication, we can look at the patterns the communication could follow. Van Dijk uses the theory of Bordewijk and Van Kaam that consists of four information patterns. These are: allocution, consultation, registration and

Allocution: the simultaneous flow of information to a collective of decentral units by a centre that is the source of the information and determines the topic, time and pace of the information. (e.g. radio and television)

Consultation: the consulting of information at a centre by individual decentral units where the centre is the source of the information and the decentral unit determines the topic, time and pace. (e.g. newspaper, teletext)

Registration: the collecting of information by a centre that determines the topic, time and pace, from one ore more decentral units that could be the source of this information and can initiate information transfer. (e.g. questionnaires, electronic banking)

Conversation : the exchange of information by two or more decentral units without a centre but through a medium, according to Van Dijk only through speech, where these units determine topic, time and pace together. (e.g. telephone)

In new media the communication pattern evolves in the direction of decentral units. The movement flows from allocution to consultation, registration and conversation. That means that for the first time in history media give us the opportunity to choose between face-to-face contact or mediated communication for a range of social activities.

The first appearances of weblogs were filters for the web, and are good examples of the registration pattern. These early weblogs functioned as a sort of news-collecting web pages. The sources that are referred to often are bloggers themselves, another centre, pointing to yet another set of (decentral) sources. Thus networks of bloggers emerge, who collect sources, point to interesting sites, with a certain measure of overlap.

Amongst professionally oriented bloggers linking to each other is also very common. There are for instance academics and higher educated people who use their blogs to sharpen and test their ideas. So these weblogs too, fit the pattern of registration.

She then criticises Van Dijks concept of conversation as speech only and draws on Donath et al (1999) who state that "conversations can be asynchronous as well". Therefor Weblogs can be included in the category and now span from consultation through registration to conversation. " the weblog as a communication
medium is really a new medium because it combines three information patterns in itself."


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