Expressing emotion in text-based Communication
Our ability to express and accurately assess emotional states is central to human life. The present study examines how people express and detect emotions during text-based communication, an environment that eliminates the nonverbal cues typically associated with emotion. The results from 40 dyadic interactions suggest that users relied on four strategies to express happiness versus sadness, including disagreement, negative affect terms, punctuation, and verbosity. Contrary to conventional wisdom, communication partners readily distinguished between positive and negative valence emotional communicators in this text-based context. The results are discussed with respect to the Social Information Processing model of strategic relational adaptation in mediated communication.