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Challenging Gendered Norms: A Sociolinguistic Study of the Written Speech Patterns on Facebook

Tehseen Zahra, Aneela Zaheer


Facebook, one of the interpersonal interaction sites has quickly become one of the favored methods of correspondence on social media and dialect has additionally been impacted regarding its utilization and rehearses on online networking. Speech patterns i.e. distinctive manners of oral expressions of males and females in a talk are one of the dialect marvels where changes can be followed. Former studies claim that men and women vary in their linguistic behavior focusing on the dominance and difference conversation process. The core of this study is to find out how the dialect of men and ladies is turning out to be more comparative as an after effect of changing sexual orientation thoughts. This study is based on the linguistic features given by Lakoff which are explored in written communication by using qualitative paradigm. The aim of this research was to find out the similar and contrastive linguistic behavior of males and females on social media. This research investigated written conversation of male and female via social networking website i.e. facebook.  The methods and materials include data consisting of comments posted by Facebook users across Pakistan in their Facebook groups, selected through convenience sampling. For this study the comments were collected through participants’ group pages based on their activity on the website and the occurrence of linguistic features in their language was noted. A snapshot of all comments along with the posts was taken and the comments were analyzed in the light of Lakoff’s linguistic features showing similarities and differences among gender. The data was analyzed qualitatively and the results suggested that the speech patterns used by males and females in online communication on social media had more similarities than differences. The consequences illustrate that there were more similarities in features as compared to differences in online written communication and it was noted that hedging, tag questions, intonation, adjectives, hypercorrect  grammar, swear words, emphatic stress, code switching, assertiveness, pauses, prolonged spellings, emoticons were used equally by males and females whereas the existence of the feature of verbosity was seen immensely among females whilst the application of Urdu font was only applied by males in written communication. This study sets that the contrast in the middle of intense and frail dialect among males and females is lessening with time as men and women are becoming each other’s equal in nearly all areas.

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