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Role Playing on the Web: Guidelines for Designing and Evaluating Personas Online

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This article starts from the premise that humans communicate through a series of roles that they assume appropriate to their rhetorical purposes. Even when speaking face to face, they present a version of themselves that they deem suitable for the time, place, and situation. When this rhetorical principle is applied to Web design, it provides powerful insights and strategies for designing and evaluating online communication. We begin this article by tracing how the tradition of rhetorical role playing has become incorporated into the electronic medium. We then present a series of guidelines in the form of prompts or questions as starting points for effective Web design.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2000

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  • Technical Communication, the Society's journal, publishes articles about the practical application of technical communication theory and serves as a common arena for discussion by practitioners. Technical Communication includes both quantitative and qualitative research while showcasing the work of some of the field's most noteworthy writers. Among its most popular features are the helpful book reviews. Technical Communication is published quarterly and is free with membership.
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