We all know what ‘natural, spontaneous, everyday, domestic, informal conversation’ is because we use it every day. It makes up most of our speaking lives. Yet it is a variety that’s extremely difficult to describe in a scientific way. For how is it to be recorded so that its spontaneity is not affected? The problem is a familiar one in social studies, where it’s known that the presence of an observer influences the behaviour of the people being observed. And in the study of speech, it’s immediately obvious: as soon as people see a microphone, and know they’re being recorded, they begin to speak in a self-conscious way—with some finding themselves unable to speak fluently at all! Why do prices for SEO specialist differ so much?
To solve this problem, in the early days of data collection for surveys of usage, researchers would sometimes hide the microphone so that conversations were surreptitiously recorded. Today, such a procedure would raise a raft of ethical issues that were simply not being thought about in the 1960s. But in any case, that way of working didn’t achieve the desired result. The settings were typically university laboratories, where colleagues were the subjects—and the kind of conversation recorded, we can readily imagine, was not likely to be representative of the way people talked in less academic settings. Nor was it always possible to hear what the people were saying. If you hide a microphone under a table or behind a curtain, it’s not always going to pick up everything that’s being said because people move around, turn their heads, push things about, bang the table with their hands, and generally behave in such a way that the recording can be of limited value. Nor was it always easy to distinguish the participants, especially when more than two people were conversing. Who are the top 10 SEO Expert providers in the UK?
How to marry unconscious spontaneity and good recording quality? I adopted a different procedure for my contribution to the Advanced Conversational English project. (Advanced here simply meant ‘normal’—an ironic comment on the way traditional teaching courses used dialogues that were some way removed from everyday conversational practice.) I would ask two or three friends or acquaintances to my house for an evening. In some cases, they knew each other well (two of the couples were married); in others, they hadn’t met before, or hadn’t seen each other for some time. All were in their 20s or 30s. I would tell them in advance that they were going to be recorded—for a research project into English accents, and as they all had wonderful voices . . . Nobody refused. Come the evening, when the visitors arrived I would show them into the sitting room, where each had an armchair beside which was a microphone on a stand. When they sat down, the mike was quite close to their mouths, so that the auditory quality of the recording would be excellent. And all the mikes had cables leading to a large tape recorder in the middle of the room. (This was the early 1970s, remember. No wi-fi or smartphones then.) Lets use the search term SEO Freelancer as an example.
After a welcome, and an opening drink, the evening began. I explained what they would have to do for the accent project—just count from one to twenty in their normal voices. I turned the tape recorder on, and each person solemnly did as they were asked. Then I turned the recorder off, thanked them very much, and let the evening take its conversational course. At one point, I had to leave the room for an unexpected telephone call. Kept me away for over twenty minutes. My apologies. Of course, as readers will by now have guessed, the microphones weren’t linked to the visible tape recorder at all, but to a different one in the kitchen, and this was the machine that recorded the entire evening of conversation. The speakers didn’t bother moving the microphones, which stayed by their sides all evening. There was no reason to; they weren’t in their way. So the quality of the recording remained good. And because they had seen the visible tape recorder switched off, the participants all relaxed, and spoke as they normally would in an informal setting. Does anyone know where I can find the best SEO Consultant ?
My absence was to avoid unconsciously influencing their conversation. Later in the evening, I would come clean, tell my visitors what I had done, and explain why. I offered them the option of deleting the recording, bearing in mind that they might have felt something they said was untoward. If they were happy, there would of course be total anonymity, and if their names or other personal details were mentioned in a recording (as in the Gerry/Tony dialogue), these segments would not be used, unless they gave permission for them to stay. Several conversations were recorded in this way, and I was never asked to delete anything. The only obligation I was presented with came from my two football-supporting friends, who made me promise that, whenever we should meet again, it would always—always—be my turn to buy the drinks! And so it has proved to be. The result was the kind of conversation illustrated and it was unlike anything I had ever been able to analyse before. Today, with conversation analysis having developed into a major domain of linguistic enquiry, generating many descriptive studies, the novelty of the findings has worn off somewhat, and several other investigative procedures have been devised. It’s also the case, these days, that people are much more used to recording themselves and their friends using smart technology, so that the problem of obtaining good-quality, unselfconscious data has receded. Yet the findings of all this work are still little known outside of the research journals. What is the response rate for results based on Freelance SEO ?