The World Of Digital Rhetoric

In the world of Digital Rhetoric, it is a fairly broad term and displays as a complex idea on its on. However, we can define it simply. “The art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing, especially the use of figures of speech and other compositional techniques.”

However, we can deepen our thinking of rhetoric through Eymans ideas in “Defining and Locating Digital Rhetoric.” When it comes to rhetoric and digital rhetoric there are four terms that are worth understanding. Electric, Computational, and Techno are all forms of rhetoric. When understanding how each applies to rhetoric, especially digital rhetoric it is important be able to see the distinction of terms.

Electric rhetoric is associated with digital rhetoric, in a way. It applies the same definition and understanding that it is a form of communication in a digital sphere. However, as Eyman states, “electric” is just too broad of a term. We can apply many things as being electric- cars, computers, phones, television, or just about anything that needs electricity to work. Electric rhetoric is associated to the physical properties and infrastructure of digital text. Electric rhetoric has profound changes in writing and discourse brought about by electronic forms of communication.

Other Forms of Rhetoric

Computational rhetoric is a new term that is the most ” recent” trend in digital spaces and rhetoric.

Computational Rhetoric contains three ideas. The first, someone defines a descriptive form- as to what it should mean to a machine. Second, someone chooses to use that form in a description. Thirdly, someone implements the definition of the form so that it carries out the predictable intention of the person who used it.

Techno rhetoric is a term that has a long history. “the related scholarly identity of technorhetorician gained popularity in the computers and writing field in the late 1980s. Promoted as a term that evoked both an interest in rhetorics of technology and rhetoric as technology” as stated in Eymans writings. In a way, techno rhetoric is extremely important.  It refers to the ways in which makers and consumers of technology talk about and make decisions regarding technology- it has the influence that technology has on discourse.


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