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date: 18 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article argues that social identities not only populate computer-mediated communication (CMC) and the Internet, but they often thrive there, both by designation (of identity: the cognitive dimension) and by design (the strategic dimension in which identities and their agendas are contested). This means that far from being eliminated in CMC, the group and its effects often shine through in CMC (intragroup cohesiveness and conformity, intergroup contrast, and competition). In terms of status and power differentials this can mean that the power and status relations associated with categories are reinforced, both cognitively, by being tied to the roles and relations associated with these identities, and strategically, by the surveillance which CMC can sometimes bring.

Keywords: CMC, Internet, social identities, power, status

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