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Face-Work in Chat Reference Encounters. Presented by Marie L. Radford and Lynn Silipigni Connaway Library Research Round Table June 24, 2006 ALA, New Orleans, Louisiana. Presenters. Marie L. Radford, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Rutgers University, SCILS

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face work in chat reference encounters

Face-Work in Chat Reference Encounters

Presented by

Marie L. Radford

and

Lynn Silipigni Connaway

Library Research Round Table

June 24, 2006

ALA, New Orleans, Louisiana

presenters
Presenters
  • Marie L. Radford, Ph.D.
    • Associate Professor,
    • Rutgers University, SCILS
    • Email:mradford@scils.rutgers.edu
    • www.scils.rutgers.edu/~mradford
  • Lynn Silipigni Connaway, Ph.D.
    • Consulting Research Scientist
    • Email: connawal@oclc.org
    • www.oclc.org/research/staff/connaway.htm
  • Grant Website:http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/synchronicity
slide3
Seeking Synchronicity:Evaluating Virtual Reference Services from User, Non-User, and Librarian Perspectives
  • $1,103,572 project funded by:
    • Institute of Museum and Library Services
      • $684,996 grant
    • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and OCLC Online Computer Library Center $405,076 in kind contributions
slide4
Seeking Synchronicity:Evaluating Virtual Reference Services from User, Non-User, and Librarian Perspectives

Project duration

10/1/2005-9/30/2007

Four phases:

  • Focus group interviews*
  • Analysis of 1,000+ QuestionPoint transcripts
  • 600 online surveys*
  • 300 telephone interviews*

*Interviews & surveys with VRS users, non-users, & librarians

phase i focus groups
Phase I: Focus Groups
  • 7 so far
    • 4 with non-users
    • 2 with VRS librarians
    • 1 with VRS users
  • 3 more to come
    • 3 more with VRS users
phase ii 24 7 transcript analysis
Phase II: 24/7 Transcript Analysis
  • Generated random sample
    • July 7, 2004 through June 27, 2005
    • 263,673 sessions
    • 25 transcripts/month = 300 total
  • 256 usable transcripts
    • Excluded system tests & technical problems
  • 226 of these analyzed for today’s presentation
classification methodology
Classification Methodology

Qualitative Analysis

  • Development/refinement of category scheme
  • Careful reading/analysis
  • Identification of patterns
  • Theoretical framework from Erving Goffman (1967)
interaction ritual essays on face to face behavior 1967
Interaction Ritual: Essays on Face-to-Face Behavior (1967)

Essay:

“On Face-Work: An analysis of Ritual Elements in Social Interaction”

Erving Goffman

1922-1982

face work
Face-Work

“Much of the activity occurring during an encounter can be understood as an effort on everyone’s part to get through the occasion and all the unanticipated and unintentional events that can cast participants in an undesirable light, without disrupting the relationships of the participants”

(Goffman, 1967, p. 41)

face defined
Face Defined
  • Positive social value person claims
  • Self-image in terms of approved social attributes
establishing face
Establishing Face
  • Face is located in flow of events
    • Feelings about face reinforced by encounters
    • If better face is established – feel good
    • If expectations not fulfilled – feel bad or hurt
    • Neutral experience – expected, not memorable
positive face
Positive Face
  • One can…
    • Have face
    • Be in face
    • Maintain face
    • Give face
    • Save face
wrong face
Wrong Face
  • One can also…
    • Be in wrong face
    • Be out of face
    • Both result in feeling shame & inferior
  • Poise is ability to conceal shameface
  • In wrong face, can still be confident if others hide this from you
expectations
Expectations
  • To maintain an expressive order
    • regulates the flow of events
  • To go to certain lengths to save face of others & themselves
    • Otherwise seen as cold, heartless, ruthless.
  • To do this “willingly & spontaneously because of emotional identification” with others & their feelings
kinds of face work
Kinds of Face-Work
  • Rituals – Greetings & Farewells
  • Corrective Process – Repair & Apology
  • AvoidanceProcess– Prevent Threats to Face
  • Poise – Control Embarrassment
face work in chat
Face-Work in Chat
  • Goffman provides a powerful way to frame analysis of chat encounters.
  • Face, face-work, & line of participants are located in flow of the transcript (event).
  • Analysis identifies instances of face-work.
  • Major categories – see handout.
transcript reading
Transcript Reading
  • Positive VRS experience
    • Duration = 1 hour 11 minutes
    • Academic User
    • Question – Boston drug company - diabetes
    • Relational Work
    • Enthusiastic user
    • Helpful librarian
  • Less than positive VRS experience
    • Duration = 39 minutes
    • Middle school or high school student
    • Question – physics – car acceleration
    • Poor reference work
    • Extreme negative closure
endnotes
Endnotes
  • This is one of the outcomes from the project Seeking Synchronicity: Evaluating Virtual Reference Services from User, Non-User, and Librarian Perspectives.
  • Funded by IMLS, Rutgers University and OCLC, Online Computer Library Center.
  • Project web site: http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/synchronicity/
questions
Questions
  • Marie L. Radford, Ph.D.
    • Email:mradford@scils.rutgers.edu
    • www.scils.rutgers.edu/~mradford
  • Lynn Silipigni Connaway, Ph.D.
    • Email: connawal@oclc.org
    • www.oclc.org/research/staff/connaway.htm