Hartmut Wessler, Diana Rieger, Jonathan Cohen, Peter Vorderer
Permanent connections around the globe. Cross-cultural differences and intercultural linkages in POPC

Pp. 188-196 in: Peter Vorderer, Dorothée Hefner, Leonard Reinecke, Christoph Klimmt (Eds.): Permanently online, permanently connected: Living and communicating in a POPC world. 2018. New York, London: Routledge

As mobile communication has come to take a central role in our daily lives, people spend more and more time with their gaze directed at their communication devices. This has made it easy to believe that everyone is really permanently connected to everyone else and permanently online. We tend to forget that the world outside of our smartphones and tablets still asserts its power on whom we can communicate with and how we do so. It is often said that we can communicate and collaborate with anyone, anytime, regardless of physical and social distance and that technology has “flattened” the world and made communication possible where it was once impossible. And while it is true that the collaboration across borders, space, and time is easier and more frequent, the world is not a global village. This chapter will examine some factors that restrict communication across borders and cultures and that therefore serve as boundary conditions for POPC. The long lines of business travelers in airports throughout the world attest that such obstacles to online communication continue to be significant enough to justify the expense and hardship of traveling around the world for face-to-face meetings.