The experiment I conducted for the Norm Breaching assignment was “Abrupt Endings”. During this experiment, while on a communication technology I had to end a conversation abruptly. For example if I were on a phone I would hang up without saying “Good Bye” or “Talk to you later”. Or while on the computer instant messaging, I would log off without finishing a conversation.
I was very excited to begin this project because I could only imagine what drama this “disrespect” could lead to. First person I experimented on, I will refer to him as John Doe, didn’t take my abrupt endings lightly. I was on my cell phone walking to my next class and John Doe and I were having a normal conversation. He had already known that I was heading to class but when I got there I hung up the phone without saying I was there or goodbye. He immediately called back, but I did not answer. About a minute or two later, he texted me and asked why I hung up so fast. I responded saying class had started.
The next time I spoke to John Doe was over the computer. This time we were talking about a class assignment that we both had to submit later that day. After we types about the important information, I turned my chat off. This way, I was still online however, he could not chat me anymore. I stayed on the computer for a little while longer and noticed that he had made a status on Facebook about how he hated when people end a conversation without letting the other person know.
Later that day, I saw John Doe because he and I have class together. At this point he was extremely upset with me because he thought that I was mad at him. After trying to drag information out of me for about 10 minutes, I finally told him that I was conducting an experiment on Norm Breaching. He laughed and understood the project.
A norm related to this project is basically saying goodbye or ending the conversation in a respectful way. By abruptly dismissing someone, they could interpret it as disrespect or that you are upset with them. When using a communication technology like a telephone or computer, it is extremely important to clarify what you say, how you feel and what you do because the person you are talking to cannot see your facial expressions, body language etc. The non-verbal languages you would normally see in person are not present. So they would not know if you were upset because that can’t see you but by hanging up the phone or logging off the computer in the middle of a conversation might suggest that you are.