Phatic technology in modern society

Victoria Wang, John V. Tucker, Kevin Haines

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A phatic technology’s purpose is to establish, develop and maintain personal and social relationships. The invention and development of phatic technologies, and their influence on human society, have been accelerating rapidly in the past decade, exemplified by the growth of social networking technologies based on the Internet. To understand this acceleration we propose to analyse the phenomenon of phatic technologies with the aid of sociological concepts of the nature of contemporary society. Specifically, in this paper, we use some key notions in Giddens’ theory of modernity as analytical tools to support and facilitate our argument that certain abstract social conditions that are characteristic of modernity amplify significantly the human need for, and thus the development of, phatic technologies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-93
JournalTechnology in Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2012


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