Volume 29, Issue 4
  • ISSN 1018-2101
  • E-ISSN: 2406-4238



The article deals with the features of impolite responses of YouTube Arab viewers of political TV talk shows. YouTube comments are written discourse of live commentary, a new genre of computer-mediated communication. Based on data from comments of Arabic viewers of political TV talk shows on YouTube, the article argues that impolite responses appear to be a common feature in Arabic comments in political talk shows on YouTube. Identity and power are reconsidered in this paper as variables that trigger impoliteness in Arabic online responses in political talk shows on YouTube. It argues that obscuring identity online incites the use of conventionalized impoliteness to exercise power on the TV presenter or the TV episode’s guest. The article also shows how communication variables such as context, commentator’s identity and models of communication influence the realization of impolite responses in those online interactions. The study draws on Spencer-Oatey (2007) to correlate identity, power, and impoliteness. It also utilized Culpeper’s (2011) bottom-up model of impoliteness triggers.


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