Publication details

Enacting an Imaginary Community: Infotainment in Online Minute-by-Minute Sports Commentaries

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CHOVANEC Jan LAVRIC, EVA Pisek, Gerhard SKINNER, ANDREW Stadler, Wolfgang

Year of publication 2008
Type Chapter of a book
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description The article analyses the characteristic features of online minute-by-minute sports commentaries, mainly with view to the mutual interdependence of the ideational and the interpersonal functions. This is manifested by a textual practice in which the provision of information about the game and its development is complemented and even supplanted by an effort to relate to the anonymous audience in as close a manner as possible. On the level of representation, the resulting text thus has a factual as well as a social orientation. On the level of presentation, i.e. with respect to the linguistic forms and strategies in which such a combination of functions is realized, this results, above all, in an increased involvement of discourse participants in the commentary, the high degree of contextualization, and communication along several thematic threads. This article documents the way an imaginary community of football fans is constructed by means of three general strategies: synthetic personalisation combined with features of orality and spokenness, the mixing of various accessed voices in the text of the commentary, and the use of several rhetorical tropes. Together, these strategies are characterised by an entertaining way of presentation and a strong orientation towards interpersonal interaction.
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