Interpersonal and hyperpersonal dimensions of computer-mediated communication

Joseph B. Walther, Brandon Van Der Heide, Artemio Ramirez, Judee K. Burgoon, Jorge Peña

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

118 Scopus citations


This chapter reviews the development, status, and future of the social information processing (SIP) theory and hyperpersonal model of computer-mediated communication (CMC), and their potential contributions to the knowledge about new media in interpersonal relations. To understand these models and their potential contributions fully, it is useful to consider the emergence of SIP in its historical theoretical context. The SIP approach has generated numerous studies extending its focus on language, its use, and its particular potency in online discourse. The hyperpersonal model proposes a set of four concurrent routines that, together, seek to explain CMC’s support of relationships with relatively greater desirability and intimacy than occur in offline counterparts. At the National Communication Association’s 2012 conference, a panel discussed the contributions of SIP theory to communication research in general, in light of its 20th year after publication. The chapter concludes with a review of some of these qualities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Handbook of the Psychology of Communication Technology
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781118426456
ISBN (Print)9781118413364
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Computer-mediated communication (CMC)
  • Hyperpersonal model
  • Interpersonal relations
  • Social information processing (SIP) theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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