Hotel websites as corporate communication

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Hotel websites as corporate communication


Author: Suen, On Yi
Title: Hotel websites as corporate communication
Degree: Ph.D.
Year: 2012
Subject: Hotels -- Computer network resources.
Web sites -- Design.
Web sites -- Evaluation.
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Dept. of English
Pages: 539 p. : ill., 1 map ; 30 cm.
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: The present study is a critical genre analysis (Bhatia, 2004) of hotel homepages, focusing on the language and visual images of the homepages of five-star hotels in Hong Kong, and the professional and social practices of website design, construction and use of these hotel homepages. The study also conducts a diachronic comparison of hotel homepages in order to reveal any social, ideological, language and image changes. The frameworks of Bhatia (2004), Martin and White (2005), and Kress and van Leeuwen (1996, 2006) were used to critically investigate and analyse the genre of hotel homepages. Bhatia's (2004) comprehensive model for analyzing written discourse was adapted to critically examine the hotel homepages from four perspectives, namely 'textual', 'ethnographic', 'socio-cognitive' and 'socio-critical' perspectives. Martin and White's (2005) framework of appraisal analysis was used to examine the interpersonal values in the introductory texts of the homepages. Kress and van Leeuwen's (1996, 2006) grammar of visual design was adopted to explore the interplay between text and image on the hotel homepages. In addition to the analyses of text, image, intertextuality and interdiscursivity, interviews with hotel website designers and web users were conducted to find out website designers' practices and audience reception which shape the design, construction and use of the hotel homepages as a genre. The study also compares hotel homepages diachronically to investigate changes in the design and presentation of hotel homepages and the underlying ideologies. The study shows that website design is shaped by practitioners who have knowledge about web writing, the ideological orientation of the hotel, and the interests of the audience and the website design team members. It shows that the construction and use of the genre of hotel homepages is very much affected by the social context in which they are used to promote the hotel and inform readers about the hotel; and that hotel websites are largely multimodal. The diachronic study shows signs of transformation of the hotel homepages in terms of images, text and layout within the past ten years.

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