What is Computer-Mediated-Communication (CMC)?
Since the 1970, people in the world has been introduce to CMC but only until 1980 people use it widely as the professionals and managers starts to demand for instrumentality of computer on their office table for work purpose. CMC is not only restricted to explain a situation where by one send a message to another individual or a group of people but it also to describe interaction and transmission of information based on text only between individuals by using computer specifically. Yet, this still make computer a multifunction type of communication although it excludes spoken language mode that might allow admission of combination between typescript and verbal communication in the time ahead. CMC is a form of communication, it comprises of asynchronous communication and synchronous communication.
As stated by Murray (2000),
“This definiton also allows for the binary fusion of CMC into synchronous and asynchronous modes. In synchronous modes of CMC, communication occurs in real time; example are IRC and MOOs (MUDs [multiuser dungeons or dimension], object oriented), both of which require participants to be communicating in the same session. Asynchronous modes of CMC, such as email and bulletin boards do not require participants to be on-line at the same time. However because of the time delays of the medium, even real-time communication are asynchronous, the length of delays depending variables such as the computer, network and typing speed” (p. 399).
Most of us are engaged in Computer-Mediated-Communication (CMC), well, before today’s lecture we don’t really know there is such a specific term, all we know is Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, Line, WeChat, Telegram, Email, Gmail, Hotmail, Skype…all you can call it a social media to communicate with the world from one terminal to another.
No doubt, CMC which include any forms of communication by which individual or groups of people using the Internet to “talk” to each other (Educational Technology, n.d.) has provided us numerous conveniences in order to reach the people we wish to communicate with. Generally, CMC includes Email, Mailing lists, UseNet newsgroup, computer conferencing, Internet Relay Chat (IRC) and Videoconferencing.
Today, like most of us do, are relying on the CMC in daily living. Students like us are more relied on CMC like Facebook to get any announcement regarding lectures or academic information in campus instead of having Face-to-face communication with the lecturers or pay attention on the notices pasted around the campus. On top of that, students love to lament in the Internet, most preferably Facebook, as if the computer can reply on their complaints and dissatisfactory. From here we can see that it is quite agreeable on the critique on CMC saying that the CMC users have been prevented from attuning to other’s individual characteristics, in other word, they get less chance in knowing the true personality of others.
The society is a coward, sometimes.
Here are our different experiences regarding on the CMC.
- The Students and the Bus – Social Influence Approach towards Media Richness.The bus issues are never a fresh issue in our campus. Students love to complain in the Facebook, regardless of criticizing or complaining. Complaint on the bus schedule, the attitude of bus drivers, the behavior of students in cutting queue, the insufficient of bus in and outside the campus and many more complaint you can imagine. The highlight is, they complain in the Internet. Giving the example of bus schedule, most of the students much rely on Facebook to check on the daily bus schedule which uploaded by the transport and communication department of Students Council UNIAMS (MPP).They rather depend on the Facebook but not the one pasted at the bus stop. During my time as the secretary of this department, I went to all colleges and bus stop to make sure all places are pasted with the latest bus schedule. Nevertheless, there were students after student who rang me or sent me messages to ask on the bus hours, well, even when I was sleeping early in the morning. Frankly speaking, it was very annoying.During the end of the semester, my team and I held a petition by collecting suggestion and signature from students around UNIMAS. Many critiques and comments appeared, one of the most unforgettable on was “I paid RM 30 each semester but I had never take a bus in UNIMAS.”
I sighed. It was the students’ choice on not taking a bus, but they are lamenting that the buses were not efficient. People like me who worked and fought on the transportation for the students were very depressed with the attitude of students. They bombarded and criticized the student council with very harsh words. Little did I know, these students are just coward in confronting the authoritative.
To a certain extent, I was annoyed and kind of offended and I posted a general statement in the Facebook (which I seldom do so).
What we can see from the case above is that the attitude of students on the Internet. Argument on CMC via the social influence approach to media richness to media richness which highlights on the factors that change the perception of CMC users on the capacities of CMC and their impacts after using the mediums (Fulk et. al, as cited in Walther, 1992) is very much agreeable. This approach has rejected the aspects of media richness and social presence theory which emphasize on the particular properties of media that highlights on the expressive capabilities and those utility in interpersonal domains. Alternatively, Fulk et al. (as cited in Walther, 1992: 456) argues that
“…the nature of the media and their potentials are socially constructed, and the richness and utility of a medium are affected by interaction with other individuals in one’s social network.”
The attitude of students, like I say are much influenced by the others especially when they are on their keyboard. They say whatever they want without being rationale. In this case, the constructive information would be conveyed in a destructive way if the keyboards warriors keep dominate the social media in their ways.
2. Online dating.
Personally I have never been in any online dating relationship or any attempt to try on such relationship but it has become a trend now where by people meet through internet. My good friend is an example of internet dating whereby she know the guy from social network which is Facebook, then they start to contact each other through WeChat as it is more private and only start to meet in person after a month or two getting to know each other. In one of our conversation, she claim that she never thought that the relationship will actually last till today which has been a year plus and she is happy more than ever to meet the romantic partner. Hence, we can conclude that this a successful case of online dating. But the question is why internet dating?
As internet is available everywhere, now it is easy for people to connect with one another neither through computer or smart phone. Thus nowadays some choose to go for online dating rather than meet and fall in love in real world simply because it was easy and a fast way to connect with others. Or maybe it their fate to meet love one in such condition? Now that will remain as a question without any fix answer.
Here, I would like to focus on adolescent and youngster as they are among the heavy users of communication tools to build relationship with friends, family and life partner. And now as world are getting more so called “modern”, people can easily interact with each other not only from computer but also through their smart phone and iPad. Speaking about online dating, it is all about getting to know a stranger without any face to face interaction in the beginning of the relationship or maybe the whole way through it. Online communication with a strangers is found to relieve one nervousness and intimate predacity (Subrahmanyam, Greenfield, & Tynes, 2004). This is due to exclusion of individual interaction and the person who behind the screen is more aware and has control on his or her text before sending the chat online. However such situation might lead to misinterpreted on one personality when the two individual start to meet up as some people might not be the same person in the real world as they are on the social network.
An interesting study on social networks has shown that girls tend to use social network to maintain the existing relationship whereas boys on the other hand use social media to enlarge their social network by making new friends and also to make a move on girls (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 2008). Hence this might lead to arisen of dating site worldwide todays.
The word written on the website such as “it’s easy to use, safe and free to join” is seem to be very persuasive as they give guarantee to people who would love to try on online dating. And the words used create excitement and anxiety for people to try on such online dating webs as the web offer possibilities for them to meet people who has the personality that suite their personal taste. Other than that, on the web of article mention above stated twenty most useful dating website which has most members and short listed top three is Match.com, My Single Friend and Eharmony.
And now with more advance technology, there is also online dates apps that actually allow an individual to search for nearby single person and make a pass on him or her on the web without any needs to confront the person and of course communicate with the other person by chatting.
Retrieved from https://www.zoosk.com/
Yet, to what extend does these sites can guarantee that the people who sign up is legitimately to be real in person? Or percentage of the relationship to be successful? Nevertheless, there is an disadvantage of such online dating as some of the people who sign up for online dating is a fraud who steal other identity and claim it to be them.
3. Online Business
Thanks to CMC, business is made possible. Currently, the Internet is the largest market in the business world. Everything we want or need is available online through websites, social media or even blogs where goods could be delivered directly to the front door. Personally, I see the convenience of it, yet it depends on everyone’s personal preferences.
How does CMC became significant in online business?
It begins with the need to communicate especially between the seller and buyer. This is one example of synchronous communication where it requires one to two or more users communicating at a certain period of time. Worth mentioned, humans truly depend on the Internet, be it for education, sports, entertainment or news.
The advantage of online business is that it is accessible by many, and buyers are able to choose their personal preferences before deciding to purchase for example, for product comparison in aspects such as prices, quality and color or maybe promotions and discounts. Another advantage for the buyer is the convenience of it, where purchase can be done with just the tip of their finger, not to mention it saves time and money instead of going to the store. Here we can relate to Rooksby (2002) as it was stated,
“People bring to CMC their experiences of physically mediated relationships, to assist them in textually-mediated relationships, and are able to establish and maintain relationships with other people by discussing subjects and projects, as they would in face-to-face relationships” (p. 72)
As for the seller, the advantage is on its product or brand’s popularity where it might be known within the local market to internationally. Regardless the far distance, seller from across the country or globe is able to communication with their buyer upon their service and request. Also, there is no need to rent a space to display their product, as the seller is able to share or convey their product directly to the buyer through meida images published in social platforms.
Examples of online business platforms, Instagram and Duriana.
On contrary, there are several disadvantages of CMC in online business. First is the problem of fraud. People tend to misuse the advantages of being invisible on the social media or Internet by selling ‘unexisted’ products. Next is on the problem of hermeneutic, where people sometimes misunderstood the real meaning of a text for example, buyer is tricked by the metaphor or word used in the text without realising the hidden charge of the product.
Therefore, a brief example of my encounter or experiences of CMC on online business is discussed above.
4. Sexual Interactions.
Internet has taken over every aspects of our daily routine for instance sending emails to our lecturers, text messaging with our partners and friends, recording audio via Wechat and Whatsapp features when we wanted to get an instant feedback or just don’t feel to type the text or maybe have a video call via Skype with your long lost friends. Those new features such as audio and video calls help a lot in easing our communication process that we don’t have to wait for a long reply through emails and text messaging.
Have we ever wondered how does the Internet affect the likelihood of having relationships? And how do we evade the potential dampening effects that technologies otherwise may impose on relational communication? For instance those couples who are getting too attached to social software/Internet instead of having interpersonal or face-to-face communication are likely risking themselves in doomed love affairs.
According to (Walther, Loh & Granka,1992) who proposed Social Information Theory said;
“Propose that relationships grow only to the extent that parties first gain information about each other and use the information to form interpersonal impressions of who they are” (p. ).
I completely agree with this theory because I do have experience knowing people on the Net and we keep coming back and we would chatted away till midnight or until one of us dozed to sleep. Somehow I feel curious not just about his looks/physical appearance but all of the information about him because he might give me misleading information due to keep his privacy safe. Besides, I also doubted that is he really charming as the way he chatted or he is a different person in real life? He might want to show his affection therefore he tends to send a flirty messages or he just wanted to take care of my feelings plus, by having anonymous conversation he would has much time to think for a reply. I may not have any idea what’s he really think and feel about my stories unless he tells me which only can be done in text form.
After a month, he did reveal his naughty side by initiating a dirty chats such as asking about sexual stuffs and I find it’s pretty weird and uncomfortable to have such conversation because if I entertain his query, he’d tempted to pleasure his lust. Therefore, I turned it into jokes in order not to hurt his feelings even I find it is inappropriate things to ask to someone that you barely know. Walther’s argument is agreeable that we only get to know a person on the Net by using whatever information that they provide us but it’s not necessarily showing their true side.
As compared to face-to-face communication, we can get a prompt feedback that comes with facial expression which defined one’s emotion rather than receiving smiley or emogi that shows less evidence of how one’s really feel. I also have experience of quarrelling over “Last Seen” features on Whatsapp with my ex-boyfriend because I find it’s an important thing that I need to ask him but he didn’t take it seriously. He appeared online but he didn’t reply me right away. So, I accused him for messaging with some other girls and we ended –up with a fight. There’s a research done saying that “Last Seen” features caused high rate of divorces. (Toffee, 2014) Couples start to complain for being insensitive, inconsiderate and heartless towards one another feelings, emotions and the use of emojis. It is important to have a face-to-face communications because we can receive the non-verbal cues such as body languages, tone of voice, language used , smiling and even nodding that shows expressions. Besides, it boost efficiency of the communication especially for those who struggle with written communication because they are some people whom are much more fluid and clear with verbal communication. It also gives a personal touch through eye-contacts and as the foundation for trust, and ultimately creates a better relationship (James A. Russell, 1997).
Is pornography a bad thing or a good thing that exists in the human nature? Is pornography a part from sex education? Majority believed that a person who watches pornography is a pathetic beast and they are just one level away from sexual violence such as rape. However, there are some might answer me by asking me back a question isn’t pornography just a part of human nature where their purpose is to learn, reproduce and a way of showing your love to your life partner.
Retrieved from http://www.bible.ca/s-pornography.htm
Recent studies based on two utilized data from the third UK National Survey of Sexual attitudes and Lifestyle (Natsal-3) as cited in The Times of India in 2015 shows that young people wants to know about sex at a earlier age compare to 20 years ago and surprisingly half of the respondents who are aged between 16 and 24 years of age for both gender watch pornography online which is available on the internet.
CMC is significant in chatting about sex where one individual chat with another individual or online streaming where individual A paid for some amount to watch individual B to be seductive or sexy whereby they know each other anonymously in porn web page and social media like Wechat and Facebook. Through the connection in porn web page or social media, sex party can be organize where different individuals attend to a party and fulfilled their sexual desire. Although sex party and streaming on pornography web page is illegal in Malaysia, there are still some who still go on even though they know the consequences.
There is no difference between porn videos obtained from Internet, Playboy and crude television movies that promote sex, joke about divorce, applaud the “creativity of sex on the screen” or make a comedy out of sex. We should never underestimate the effects any of these will have on those who view them. Even music video today is striving to please the audience sexually such as Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda”, Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball”. The rhythm, the beat, and the words strive to give the audience sexual appeal.
Still, is pornography the catalyst of sexual abuse and violence? There are many pornography video in internet where you can watch for free and millions of porno addict willingly pay to watch online streaming and download HD version. By watching pornography, some say they learn more skills to entertain their sex partner but most of them say it all depends on your moral value in how you perceive and control your “natural calls”?
I do not want to post any of the pornography website link in our blog. Why? It is because of the deadly virus that will kill your laptop software slowly. Not to mention, the popular Facebook virus where u click into the porn link and the virus will post on behalf of you into other’s timeline. People in Malaysia will question you in person or worse might prejudice you as someone pervert and most probably might rape you in any chance. So, judge yourself is pornography something good or bad?
Computer Mediated Communication (CMC). (n.d.). Retrieved from https://web.warwick.ac.uk/ETS/Publications/Guides/cmc.htm
James A. Russell, J. M.-D. (1997). The Psychology of Facial Expression. US: Cambridge University .
Murray, D. E. (2000). Protean communication: The language of computer-mediated communication. Tesol Quarterly, 34(3), 397-421.
Rooksby, E. (2002). E-mail and Ethics: Style and ethical relations in computer-mediated communication. London: Routledge.
Subrahmanyam, K., & Greenfield , P. (2008). Online communication and adolescent relationships. The Future of Children, 18(1), 119-146.
Subrahmanyam, K., Greenfield, P. M., & Tynes, B. (2004). Constructing sexuality and identity in an online teen chatroom. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 25(6), 651-66.
Toffee. (2014, April 16). Couple break up because of ‘last seen at’ feature of WhatsApp. Retrieved March Wednesday, 18, from http://www.faking.news: http://www.fakingnews.firstpost.com/2014/04/couple-break-up-because-of-last-seen-at-feature-of-whatsapp/
Walther, J. B. (1992). Theories of computer-mediated communication and interpersonal relations. United States: SAGE Publications Inc
Walther, J. B., Loh, T., & Granka, L. (2005. Let me count the ways: The interchange of verbal and nonverbal cues in computer-mediated and face to-face affinity. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 24, 36–65.