Informal Communication Channels

Informal communication channels carry casual, social, and personal messages on a regular basis in or around the workplace. Informal communication channels disseminate rumors, gossip, accurate as well as inaccurate information, and, on occasion, official messages. Anyone inside or outside an organization can originate a grapevine message. Messages transmitted through informal channels usually result from incomplete information from official sources, environmental influences in the organization or outside it, and the basic human needs to socialize and stay informe




Communication Contexts

Human communication occurs in several kinds of situation. These are

(1) two-person,

(2) interviewing,

(3) small-group,

(4) public,

(5) organizational,

(6) mass communication.

Two-person or dyadic communication, the basic unit of communication, includes most of the informal, everyday exchanges that we engage in from the time we get up until we go to bed. This communication involves a lot of very informal and superficial and at the same time intimate relationships.

Interviewingcan be defined as conversation with a purpose. It usually involves two people and is considered a special form of dyadic communication. It is more targeted toward accomplishing a specific purpose. Small-group communication is a "face-to face communication among a small group of people who share a common purpose or goal, feel a sense of belonging to the group, and exert influence upon one another".

Public communication is often referred to as public speaking. It occurs in public places. It is relatively formal and structured. It is usually planned in advance. There are relatively clear-cut behavioral norms.

Organizational communication is defined as "the flow of messages within a network of interdependent relationships"

Mass communication involves communication that is mediated. The source of a message communicates through print or electronic media. The message is intended for mass. It is the most formal and expensive. Feedback is severely limited. The audience is large, heterogeneous, and anonymous to the source. .

Intercultural communicationoccurs between members of different cultures. Culture is a way of life developed and shared by a group of people and passed down from generation to generation. "Whenever the parties of a communication act bring with them different experiential backgrounds that reflect a longstanding deposit of group experience, knowledge, and values, we have intercultural communications" .


9 b speech acts and events

Public life and peoples private lives consist of an array of various situations and events. Life can be conceived as a gigantic network of speech acts bridged together into speech events. Negotiations, introductions, invitations, complaints, etc. are typical complex speech events.

According to Austin , each speech act has at least three facets to it: a locutionary act, an illocutionary act, and a perlocutionary act .A locutionary act is the act of simply uttering a sentence from a language; it is a description of what the speaker says. It contains the speakers verbalized message. It involves three components : a phonetic act of uttering certain noises sounds; a phatic act of constructing a particular sentence in a particular language; a rhetic act of contextualization of a certain sense and reference which are equivalent to some meaning .An illocutionary act is what the speaker does in uttering a sentence. It indicates the speakers purpose in saying smth, .These acts include stating, requesting, questioning, promising, apologizing, appointing, answering questions, announcing an intention, making a criticism, making an identification, making predictions, issuing commands, warning, etc. A perlocutionary act produces sequential effects on the feelings, thoughts, or actions of hearers.

Speech event is an activity in which participants interact via language in some conventional way to arrive at some outcome. Prayers, quarrels, special songs belong to oral speech act. Written speech acts or inscriptions can be represented by notifications, contracts. Universal speech acts as asking, answering, promises can be both oral and written.

Though speech acts are universal phenomena THEY HAVE their peculiarities across cultures and even genders.



Felicity Conditions

From the very beginning, Austin realized that context was an essential factor in the valid performane of an illocutionary act. He noted that the circumstances and the participants must be appropriate; . Austin called these certain expected or appropriate circumstances felicity conditions for the performance of a speech act to be recognized as intended. .Searle tried to categorize felicity conditions into four types;

general conditions on the participants, for example, that they can understand the language being used and that they are not play-acting or being nonsensical and

content conditions.

More technically, Searle distinguished:

Preparatory conditions. Preparatory conditions are those existing antecedent to the utterance, including the speakers beliefs about the hearers capabilities and state of mind. ..

Sincerity conditions. Sincerity conditions relate to the speakers state of mind. For a promise, the speaker must genuinely intend to carry out the future action, and, for a warning, the speaker genuinely believes that the future event will not have a beneficial effect.

Essential condition.The essential condition requires that the utterance be recognizable as an instance of the illocutionary act in question. For example, by the act of uttering a promise, we thereby intend to create an obligation to carry out the action as promised. In other words, the utterance changes my state from non-obligation to obligation. Similarly, with a warning, under the essential condition, the utterance changes our state from non-informing of a bad future event to informing.

Propositional content conditions. Propositional content conditions relate to the state of affairs predicated in the utterance. A further content condition for a promise requires that the future event will be a future act of the speaker.



Verbal messages

A verbal message is any type of spoken communication that uses one or more words. There is an intentional verbal messages; these are the conscious attempts we make to communicate with others through speech. Using verbal symbols we are able to create images in our brains.

The common principle states that words themselves do not contain any meaning. it is a fallacy to believe that meanings are carried or contained by words.

Unintentional verbal messages are the things we say without meaning to (slips of the tongue). Freud argued that all the apparently unintentional stimuli we transmit both verbal and nonverbal are unconsciously motivated.

Nonverbal messages are all the messages we transmit without words or over and above the words we use. They include all the nonverbal aspects of our behaviour: facial expression, posture, tone of voice, hand movements, manner of dress, and so on. Intentional nonverbal messages are ones we want to transmit. We use them to reinforce verbal messages. At times we deliberately use nonverbal messages to cancel out a polite verbal response and indicate our true feelings: the verbal message may be positive, but the tone of voice and facial expression indicate that we mean something negative.

Unintentional nonverbal messages are all those nonverbal aspects of our behaviour transmitted without our control. Controlling nonverbal messages is a very difficult task. Body language often gives us away.



Expressed and Implied Locutionary Acts

AAA locutionary act is the act of simply uttering a sentence from a language; it is an act of producing a meaningful expressions such. It contains the speakers verbalized message and describes what the speaker says. It involves three components:

1. a phonetic act of uttering certain noises sounds;

2. a phatic of constructing a particular sentence in a particular language: uttering certain words belonging to a certain vocabulary, in a certain grammar, with a certain intonation;

3. a rhetic act of contextualization of a certain sense and reference which are equivalent to some meaning.

The locutionary act is concerned with the propositional content of the utterance, which is what follows the performative verb in an explicit performative and the entire utterance in a nonexplicit performative.

Explicit: I promise Ill write the report tomorrow.

Nonexplicit: Ill write the report tomorrow.

The propositional content of a locutionary act can be either expressed directly or implied via implicature. The propositional content is expressedif the utterance actually contains an expression of the propositional content condition for the illocutionary act involved.

On the other hand, the propositional content is implied if the utterance does not contain an expression of the propositional content condition for the illocutionary act involved.

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