Computer-Mediated Communication

Definition of Computer-Mediated Communication

Computer-Mediated Communication (CMC) refers to any interaction or exchange of information between individuals or groups using digital technologies like computers, smartphones, and the internet as the medium. CMC can take various forms, including text-based emails, instant messaging, forums, social media platforms, and video conferencing. It enables people to communicate in real-time or asynchronously, breaking geographical barriers and often fostering a sense of community among users.


The phonetics of the keyword “Computer-Mediated Communication” can be described using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) as follows:/ˈkəmˌpyutər ˌmidɪˈeɪtɪd kəˌmjunɪˈkeɪʃən/Here’s the breakdown:- “Computer” – /ˈkəmˌpyutər/- “Mediated” – /ˌmidɪˈeɪtɪd/- “Communication” – /kəˌmjunɪˈkeɪʃən/

Key Takeaways

  1. Computer-Mediated Communication enables individuals and groups to interact and share information through digital technologies, resulting in more efficient and diverse modes of communication.
  2. It transcends geographical and time barriers, allowing for real-time and asynchronous communication, expanding personal and professional networks beyond physical limitations.
  3. As communication becomes increasingly digital, it is essential to develop strong digital literacy skills and understanding of online etiquette to effectively navigate the nuanced dynamics of Computer-Mediated Communication.

Importance of Computer-Mediated Communication

Computer-Mediated Communication (CMC) is an important term in technology as it refers to the various ways people interact and communicate through digital platforms such as email, instant messaging, social media, and online forums.

The significance of CMC lies in its ability to transcend geographical boundaries, facilitate real-time or asynchronous communication, and provide a platform for diverse groups of people to connect, share ideas, and work together.

By breaking down barriers and expanding accessibility, CMC has transformed the way we exchange information, collaborate, and build relationships on personal, professional, and global levels.

Its wide-ranging impact also extends to various disciplines, including education, business, and social sciences, as it continues to reshape and redefine conventional communication practices in our increasingly interconnected world.


Computer-Mediated Communication (CMC) has revolutionized the way individuals and organizations interact and collaborate in the modern world. The primary purpose of CMC is to facilitate and streamline conversations, transactions, and information exchange among people who may be separated by physical distance or time zones. By bridging gaps and breaking down geographical barriers, CMC allows for increased communication efficiency, as well as fosters stronger connections between users.

It enables people to work together, exchange ideas, build relationships, entertain, and participate in cultural exchanges without being required to meet in person. Moreover, CMC has become an essential tool for organizations to quickly disseminate information, develop teamwork, and effectively manage remote workforces. The wide array of CMC tools, ranging from email, social media, messaging apps, video conferencing, online forums, and virtual reality, empower users with choice and versatility to suit specific communication needs and preferences.

An important advantage of CMC is that it can cater to asynchronous interactions through mediums like email, allowing individuals to communicate at their convenience, or synchronous interactions, like instant messaging and video conferencing, that facilitate real-time conversations. Furthermore, it provides opportunities for non-verbal communication through the use of emojis, GIFs, and stickers, which help users convey their emotions and personalize the communication experience. In the realm of business, CMC can aid in building customer relationships through online customer support channels and targeted marketing efforts.

Ultimately, computer-mediated communication serves as an indispensable tool for individuals, organizations, and communities to stay connected and engaged in a rapidly evolving digital landscape.

Examples of Computer-Mediated Communication

Email Communication: One of the most widespread and well-known forms of computer-mediated communication, email allows users to send electronic messages to others using a computer, smartphone, or other internet-connected devices. It is used worldwide by individuals and organizations alike to exchange information, communicate, and collaborate on work projects.

Online Chat and Instant Messaging: Online chat platforms such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Slack enable users to send and receive text messages, multimedia content, and documents in real-time. These platforms have become a staple for both personal conversations and professional collaboration, allowing individuals and teams to connect across different locations and time zones.

Virtual Conferences and Webinars: Virtual conferencing tools like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet facilitate communication through live streaming of audio and video content. Webinars and conferences hosted on these platforms are utilized by companies, educational institutions, and various other organizations for presentations, training, Q&A sessions, and team meetings. These tools enable teams and individuals to continue collaborating and sharing knowledge without the need for physical presence, offering a flexible and cost-effective alternative to traditional face-to-face meetings.

FAQ: Computer-Mediated Communication

1. What is computer-mediated communication?

Computer-mediated communication (CMC) refers to any form of communication between two or more people that takes place through the use of computer devices or technology. Examples include emails, instant messaging, chat rooms, social networking sites, and online forums.

2. How does computer-mediated communication differ from traditional communication?

CMC differs from traditional communication in several ways, including the absence of non-verbal cues, reduced social context, increased anonymity, and the ability to communicate with multiple people simultaneously. These factors can influence the style and content of messages in CMC and may lead to increased miscommunication or altered social dynamics.

3. What are the advantages of computer-mediated communication?

Some advantages of CMC include the ability to communicate with people located anywhere in the world, increased accessibility for individuals with disabilities, the potential for enhanced collaboration, and increased opportunities for learning and sharing information. Additionally, CMC can be more cost-effective than traditional communication methods, particularly for long-distance communication.

4. What are the disadvantages of computer-mediated communication?

Disadvantages of CMC can include a lack of non-verbal cues, which can lead to misunderstandings and misinterpretations, as well as potential feelings of isolation or dehumanization. There can also be issues with privacy and security, as well as potential problems with addiction and overreliance on technology for social interaction.

5. How has computer-mediated communication impacted modern society?

CMC has had a significant impact on modern society, changing how we interact with others and how we access information. It has allowed for the rise of social media, expanded global communication and collaboration, and facilitated the spread of information and ideas at a rapid pace. However, concerns have also been raised about the impact of CMC on privacy, security, and interpersonal skills.

Related Technology Terms

  • Email communication
  • Instant messaging
  • Social media platforms
  • Video conferencing
  • Online discussion forums

Sources for More Information


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