All Academic, Inc. Research Logo

Info/CitationFAQResearchAll Academic Inc.
Document

Audience Perceptions of Background Nonverbal Behaviors Displayed by Candidates in Televised Political Debates
Unformatted Document Text:  Background Behaviors: 4 on the degree to which such behavior is both efficient and appropriate. Though such behavior may be an effective way of getting an audience to question what an opponent is saying, an audience might also consider such behaviors to be inappropriate, in which case a debater may opt to avoid displaying them. With this in mind, the purpose of this study was to examine the degree to which background behaviors displayed in political debates are perceived to be inappropriate by members of an audience. Previous research, though not focusing specifically on issues of perceived appropriateness, suggests that such background behaviors do affect audience perceptions of debaters’ credibility. Seiter (1999, 2001), for instance, found that when a nonspeaking debater communicated constant disagreement with what his opponent was saying (e.g., by shaking his head, frowning, and smirking), the nonspeaking debater was given low ratings of competence, composure, character, and sociability, but high ratings of extroversion and deceptiveness. When the nonspeaking debater showed moderate background disagreement, he was given low ratings of composure, character, and sociability, but high ratings of extroversion and deceptiveness. Taken together, these results suggest that background behaviors indicating disagreement tend to be associated with negative impressions of the background communicator’s credibility. Seiter (1999) suggested that “A possible explanation for these findings is that background nonverbal behavior may be perceived as constituting a violation of fairness in debates and therefore is perceived as rude and inept” (p. 859). He further noted that future research is needed to explore whether such behaviors are indeed perceived as inappropriate. Though it is probably true that background nonverbal disagreement displayed by a debater is less intrusive than verbal interruptions, it is suggested here that, like interruptions, such behaviors constitute a violation of turn-taking etiquette. While this should be especially true of constant background behaviors, it is also suspected that moderate displays of such behaviors should also be seen as inappropriate. This reasoning, together with research suggesting that the display of background nonverbal disagreement is related to negative impressions of credibility (see above), leads to the following hypothesis:

Authors: Seiter, John.
first   previous   Page 4 of 16   next   last



background image
Background Behaviors: 4
on the degree to which such behavior is both efficient and appropriate. Though such behavior
may be an effective way of getting an audience to question what an opponent is saying, an
audience might also consider such behaviors to be inappropriate, in which case a debater may opt
to avoid displaying them. With this in mind, the purpose of this study was to examine the degree
to which background behaviors displayed in political debates are perceived to be inappropriate
by members of an audience.
Previous research, though not focusing specifically on issues of perceived
appropriateness, suggests that such background behaviors do affect audience perceptions of
debaters’ credibility. Seiter (1999, 2001), for instance, found that when a nonspeaking debater
communicated constant disagreement with what his opponent was saying (e.g., by shaking his
head, frowning, and smirking), the nonspeaking debater was given low ratings of competence,
composure, character, and sociability, but high ratings of extroversion and deceptiveness. When
the nonspeaking debater showed moderate background disagreement, he was given low ratings of
composure, character, and sociability, but high ratings of extroversion and deceptiveness. Taken
together, these results suggest that background behaviors indicating disagreement tend to be
associated with negative impressions of the background communicator’s credibility. Seiter
(1999) suggested that “A possible explanation for these findings is that background nonverbal
behavior may be perceived as constituting a violation of fairness in debates and therefore is
perceived as rude and inept” (p. 859). He further noted that future research is needed to explore
whether such behaviors are indeed perceived as inappropriate.
Though it is probably true that background nonverbal disagreement displayed by a
debater is less intrusive than verbal interruptions, it is suggested here that, like interruptions, such
behaviors constitute a violation of turn-taking etiquette. While this should be especially true of
constant background behaviors, it is also suspected that moderate displays of such behaviors
should also be seen as inappropriate. This reasoning, together with research suggesting that the
display of background nonverbal disagreement is related to negative impressions of credibility
(see above), leads to the following hypothesis:


Convention
Submission, Review, and Scheduling! All Academic Convention can help with all of your abstract management needs and many more. Contact us today for a quote!
Submission - Custom fields, multiple submission types, tracks, audio visual, multiple upload formats, automatic conversion to pdf.
Review - Peer Review, Bulk reviewer assignment, bulk emails, ranking, z-score statistics, and multiple worksheets!
Reports - Many standard and custom reports generated while you wait. Print programs with participant indexes, event grids, and more!
Scheduling - Flexible and convenient grid scheduling within rooms and buildings. Conflict checking and advanced filtering.
Communication - Bulk email tools to help your administrators send reminders and responses. Use form letters, a message center, and much more!
Management - Search tools, duplicate people management, editing tools, submission transfers, many tools to manage a variety of conference management headaches!
Click here for more information.

first   previous   Page 4 of 16   next   last

©2012 All Academic, Inc.