Message Design Logic

(Communication Theory)

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Communication Theory
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What is Message design logic?

Message design logic is a communication theory that makes the claim that individuals possess implicit theories of communication within themselves, called message design logics. Referred to as a “theory of theories,” Message Design Logic offers three different fundamental premises in reasoning about communication. As author Barbara O’Keefe describes, Message Design Logic is “the kind of communication-constituting belief system the message producer relies on in reasoning from the goals sought to the message design used.” These three premises — Expressive Logic, Conventional Logic, and Rhetorical Logic — are belief systems that communicators might utilize when designing messages. The message design logics, therefore, represent “internally consistent and developmentally ordered stages in the acquisition of working knowledge about the systematic properties of verbal messages.” As O’Keefe describes further, each premise is “associated with a constellation of related beliefs: a communication-constituting concept, a conception of the functional possibilities of communication, unit formation procedures, and principles of coherence.” The underlying idea behind O’Keefe's work is that “communication is not necessarily a uniform process.”

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