By Christine Lee, cmlee
>> Is the
Internet really the great equalizer between males and
females? Or do men and women still communicate differently
with each other even when they're communicating online?
Seeking to answer these questions, I analyzed the logs
of instant messaging exchanges of 50 pairs of college
students that had taken place between September 2002
and May 2003.
>> I discovered
that gender differences similar to those found in real
space do exist in instant messaging among college students,
but that the nature of instant messaging lessens those
differences in mixed gender conversations. Male-male
and female-female conversations each possess distinctive
characteristics, indicating that there are gender-based
tendencies in instant messaging. However, in male-female
conversations, instant messaging equalizes some of the
traditional gender differences found in real space interaction,
as well as some of the differences found between male-male
and female-female conversations.
more about my findings below (or if you want
to learn more about other aspects of gender interaction,
go to Abe's project about flirting in instant messaging