Zeitschrift für germanistische Linguistik, 41(1), 81-101
The internet affords many different types of multimodal and networked communication. That said, the paper asks about the conceptual standing of online texts that are (re-)made, viewed and read in acts of communication. It thus seeks to develop a conceptual approach towards defining online texts as accomplished and enacted sign ensembles that are afforded by communicative settings. To this end, we mobilise insights from linguistics and communication studies as well as sensibilities from the sociology of technology so as to combine understandings of media affordances, communicative genres and markers of textuality with a view on the routine work that goes into making and employing texts. Taken together, online texts are understood as visually displayed, interface-sensitive and prefigured sets of signs whose specific designs and coherent and cohesive organisations depend on situations, ways of handling, code and viewing devices.