13. A Cross-Contextual Examination of Technologically Mediated Communication and Social Presence in Long-Distance Relationships (Katheryn C. Maguire / Stacey L. Connaughton)
A Cross-Contextual Examination of Technologically Mediated Communication and Social Presence in Long-Distance Relationships
Katheryn C. Maguire
Stacey L. Connaughton
Distanced relationships (DRs), across several contexts, are an ever-increasing occurrence. Up to one million marriages and as many as one-third of college premarital relationships experience long-term separations annually (Aylor, 2003). Distanced relationships are also common in organizational realms that utilize distanced work arrangements (i.e., remote teams, telecommuters) (e.g., Connaughton & Shuffler, 2007; Gibbs, 2002; Rosenfeld, Richman, & May, 2004). Although researchers in both relational and organizational contexts argue that DRs are fundamentally different from proximal relationships (PRs) (e.g., Aylor, 2003; Bell & Kozlowski, 2002; Beranek & Martz, 2005), we argue that DRs and PRs are actually quite similar in that unit members in both situations must depend on one another to achieve relational and task goals. The difference, we suggest, lies in the preferred and/or available means of interaction. Whereas individuals in PRs engage in frequent face-to-face (FtF) contact, those in DRs rely on technologically mediated communication (TMC) to accomplish their goals.
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