Colorado Research in Linguistics

Document Type

Working Paper


This paper investigates the methods used by speakers to end conversations in instant message discourse. The analysis describes two distinct patterns of closing sequences – expanded archetype closings and partially automated closings – used to make a closing relevant to the interaction. The structure of these patterns are demonstrated to be reliant upon speaker orientation to various social and technological aspects of the medium, such as online presence and program- created automated messages. The analysis concludes that the ways in which speakers close conversations are similar in structure to spoken closings in face- to-face interactions, though contoured specifically to the online medium in their application.



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