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Always OnLanguage in an Online and Mobile World$
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Naomi S. Baron

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195313055

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195313055.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 January 2022

Going Mobile

Going Mobile

Cell Phones in Context

(p.127) 7 Going Mobile
Always On


Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses mobile phones, also known as cell phones to highlight their portability, and their impact on language and social interaction. Mobile phones are used either to make voice calls or for text messaging, for emergency purposes or filling dead time while waiting for a bus. This chapter looks at how usage patterns differ across age or gender. Another issue concerns social dynamics: How are young people emancipated from direct adult supervision by having access to personal communication devices? Does a mobile phone make a social statement about the user through its faceplate, decorative strap, ring tones, or where it is placed when he or she sits down to lunch with friends? Under what circumstances is it appropriate to answer a ringing phone in public or place a call while riding on a commuter train? This chapter also examines the influence of culture on the use of mobile phones, focusing on Japan and the United States. Text messaging is also compared with instant messaging.

Keywords:   mobile phones, culture, Japan, United States, text messaging, language, social interaction, social dynamics, voice calls, instant messaging

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