Video-Mediated Interaction (VMI)

Introduction to a special issue on the multimodal accomplishment of VMI institutional activities


  • Brian Lystgaard Due University of Copenhagen
  • Christian Licoppe Telecom Paristech



video-mediated interaction, VMI, ethnomethodology, conversation analysis, EMCA, multimodality, institutional, meetings, healthcare, organisations, embodiment


Video-Mediated Interaction (VMI) has become a mainstream, recognisable form of interaction that is often necessary for the routine accomplishment of institutional activities. It is probable that, in the wake of COVID-19, we are currently witnessing the emergence of a new normal that is rapidly forcing people to learn how to interact via different kinds of video-mediating technologies. Whereas prior research has predominantly provided insights into, e.g. frequencies of meetings or people’s feelings and experiences based on interviews, in this special issue we present new findings regarding the detailed interactional organisation and sense-making practices in which people are practically engaged, as these naturally unfold in situated contexts. Grounded in ethnomethodology and conversation analysis (EMCA) and video-based data-collection methodology, all of the papers in this special issue explore, at a very detailed and granular level, just how video-mediated interaction is accomplished moment by moment. This approach and its findings contribute new knowledge to research communities working with video-mediation. As such, this approach is of considerable value to practitioners who need to achieve institutional goals in effective ways. In this introduction, we present a short overview of the state-of-the-art in EMCA research, and highlight the new findings contributed by the seven articles in this special issue. 


Arminen, I. (2005). Institutional Interaction: Studies of Talk at Work. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Limited.

Arminen, I., Licoppe, C., & Spagnolli, A. (2016). Respecifying Mediated Interaction. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 49(4), 290–309.

Bowden, H. M., & Svahn, J. (2020). Collaborative work on an online platform in video-mediated homework support. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 3(3).

Cooren, F. (2014). Organizational Discourse: Communication and Constitution. Cambridge; Malden MA: Polity Press.

Dourish, P., Adler, A., Bellotti, V., & Henderson, A. (1996). Your place or mine? Learning from long-term use of Audio-Video communication. Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), 5(1), 33–62.

Dourish, P., & Button, G. (1998). On “Technomethodology”: Foundational Relationships Between Ethnomethodology and System Design. Human–Computer Interaction, 13(4), 395.

Drew, P., & Heritage, J. (1992). Talk at Work: Interaction in Institutional Settings. Cambridge University Press.

Due, B. (2017). Multimodal interaktionsanalyse og videoetnografisk dataindsamling. København: Samfundslitteratur.

Due, B. L. (forth.a). RoboDoc: Semiotic resources for achieving face-to-screenface formation with a telepresence robot. Semiotica (ahead of print).

Due, B. L. (forth.b). Situated Co-Operative Creativity. Pragmatics and Society.

Due, B. L., & Trærup, J. (2018). Passing Glasses: Accomplishing Deontic Stance at the Optician. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 1(2).

Due, B. L., & Lange, S. B. (2020). Body Part Highlighting: Exploring two types of embodied practices in two sub-types of showing sequences in video-mediated consultations. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 3(3).

Due, B. L., Lange, S. B., Nielsen, M. F., & Jarlskov, C. (2019). Mimicable embodied demonstration in a decomposed sequence: Two aspects of recipient design in professionals’ video-mediated encounters. Journal of Pragmatics, 152, 13–27.

Fornel, M. de. (1996). The Interactional Frame of Videophonic Exchange. Réseaux. Communication, Technologie, Société, 4(1), 47–72.

Gallagher, S., & Zahavi, D. (2020). The Phenomenological Mind. Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge.

Garfinkel, H. (1967). Studies in Ethnomethodology. Prentice Hall: Englewood Cliffs, N. J.

Garfinkel, H. (2002). Ethnomethodology’s program: Working out Durkeim’s aphorism. Lanham Md.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.

Garfinkel, H., Lynch, M., & Livingston, E. (1981). The Work of a Discovering Science Construed with Materials from the Optically Discovered Pulsar 11(2): 131-158 Philosophy of the Social Sciences.

Garfinkel, H., & Sacks, H. L. (1970). On Formal Structures of Practical Actions. In J. C. McKinney & E.A. Tiryakian (eds.): Theoretical Sociology: Perspectives and Developments. 338–366. New York: Appleton Century Crofts.

Gibson, J. J. (1979). The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

Goffman, E. (1967). Interaction Ritual: Essays on Face-to-Face Behavior. Garden City, N. Y. : Doubleday.

Goodwin, C. (1979). The Interactive Construction of a Sentence in Natural Conversation. In G. Psathas (Ed.): Everyday Language: Studies in Ethnomethodology: 97–121. New York: Irvington Publishers.

Goodwin, C. (2007). Participation, Stance and Affect in the Organization of Activities. Discourse and Society, 18(1), 53–74.

Goodwin, C. (2018). Why Multimodality? Why co-operative action? Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 1(2).

Have, P. (2007). Doing Conversation Analysis. London: SAGE.

Hazel, S., Mortensen, K., & Rasmussen, G. (2014). Introduction: A body of resources – CA studies of social conduct. Journal of Pragmatics, 65, 1–9.

Heath, C., Hindmarsh, J., & Luff, P. (2010). Video in Qualitative Research. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.

Heath, C., & Luff, P. (1993). Disembodied conduct: Interactional asymmetries in video-mediated communication. In G. Button (Ed.), Technology in Working Order: Studies of Work, Interaction and Technology. (pp. 35–54). London, New Work: Routledge.

Heritage, J. (1984). Garfinkel and Ethnomethodology. Cambridge: Polity Press.

Heritage, J., & Clayman, S. (2010). Talk in action: Interactions, identities, and institutions. Chichester, U.K.; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Hilbert, R. A. (1990). Ethnomethodology and the Micro-Macro Order. American Sociological Review, 55(6), 794–808.

Hjulstad, J. (2016). Practices of Organizing Built Space in Videoconference-Mediated Interactions. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 49(4), 325–341.

Hutchby, I. (2001). Conversation and Technology: From the Telephone to the Internet. Cambridge, UK ; Malden, MA: Polity.

Hutchby, I. (2008). Conversation Analysis. Cambridge: Polity.

Kendon, A. (1975). Introduction in Organization of behavior in face-to-face interaction. Chicago: Mouton

Lange, S. B. (2020). Video Mediation in Institutional Encounters. 4 studies from an applied ethnomethodological and conversation analytic project [Unpublished PhD dissertation]. University of Copenhagen.

Licoppe, C. (2012). Understanding mediated appearances and their proliferation: The case of the phone rings and the ‘crisis of the summons.’ New Media & Society, 14(7), 1073–1091.

Licoppe, C. (2015a). « Apparitions », multiples salutations et « coucou ». Reseaux, n° 194(6), 85–124.

Licoppe, C. (2015b). Video communication and ‘camera actions’: The production of wide video shots in courtrooms with remote defendants. Journal of Pragmatics, 76(Supplement C), 117–134.

Licoppe, C. (2017). “How to show the interpreter on screen ? The normative organization of visual ecologies in multilingual courtrooms with video links". Journal of Pragmatics. 107, 147-164.

Licoppe, C., & Dumoulin, L. (2010). The “Curious Case” of an Unspoken Opening Speech Act: A Video-Ethnography of the Use of Video Communication in Courtroom Activities. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 43(3), 211–231.

Licoppe, C., & Morel, J. (2012). Video-in-interaction: ‘“Talking heads”’ and the multimodal organization of mobile and skype video calls. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 45, 37–41.

Licoppe, C., & Morel, J., (2014). “Mundane video directors. Showing one’s environment in Skype and mobile video calls.” In M. Broth, E. Laurier & L. Mondada (Eds), Video@Work, London, Routledge: 135-160.

Licoppe C, & Tuncer, S, (2019), "The initiation of showing sequences in video-mediated communication", Gesprächsforschung: Online-Zeitschrift zur verbalen Interaktion, vol. 20, pp. 545-571.

Llewellyn, N., & Hindmarsh, J. (2011). Organisation, Interaction and Practice: Studies of Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Luff, Paul, Heath, C., Yamashita, N., Kuzuoka, H., & Jirotka, M. (2016). Embedded Reference: Translocating Gestures in Video-Mediated Interaction. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 49(4), 342–361.

Luff, Poul, Heath, C., Kuzuoka, H., Hindmarsh, J., Yamazaki, K., & Oyama, S. (2003). Fractured Ecologies: Creating Environments for Collaboration. Human-Computer Interaction, 18(1), 51.

Lynch, M. (1993). Scientific Practice and Ordinary Action: Ethnomethodology and Social Studies of Science. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Mlynář, J., Gonzales-Martínez, E., & Lalanne, D. (2018). Situated organization of video-mediated interaction: A review of ethnomethodological and conversation analytic studies. Interacting with Computers, 30(2), 73–84.

Mondada, L. (2003). Working with video: How surgeons produce video records of their actions. Visual Studies, 18(1), 58–73.

Mondada, L. (2007). Intertwining Technology and the Interactional Order. Reseaux, No 144(5), 141–182.

Mondada, L. (2015). Ouverture et préouverture des réunions visiophoniques. Reseaux, n° 194(6), 39–84.

Mondada, L. (2019a). Contemporary issues in conversation analysis: Embodiment and materiality, multimodality and multisensoriality in social interaction. Journal of Pragmatics, 145, 47–62.

Mondada, L. (2019b). Participants' orientations to material and sensorial features of objects: looking, touching, smelling and tasting while requesting products in shops. Gesprächsforschung: Online-Zeitschrift zur verbalen Interaktion, vol. 20, pp. 461-494.

Morel, J., & Licoppe, C. (2010). Studyin mobile video telephony. In Mobile Methods (eds.) M. Büscher, J. Urry, K. Witchger. New York: Routledge.

Mortensen, K., & Wagner, J. (2019). " Inspection sequences – multisensorial inspections of unfamiliar objects". Gesprächsforschung: Online-Zeitschrift zur verbalen Interaktion, vol. 20, pp. 399-443.

Nevile, M. (2015). The Embodied Turn in Research on Language and Social Interaction. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 48(2), 121–151.

Nielsen, A. M. R. (2020). Co-constructing the Video Consultation-competent patient. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 3(3).

Nielsen, M. F. (2014). Not meeting your eyes. Skype and the Gaze of Family and Friendship Conference. Microsoft Research Lab, Cambridge

Nielsen, M. F. (2019). Adjusting or verbalizing visuals in ICT mediated professional encounters. In D. Day & J. Wagner (Eds.), Objects, Bodies and Work Practices (pp. 191–215). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.

Olbertz-Siitonen, M. (2015). Transmission delay in technology-mediated interaction at work. PsychNology Journal, 13(2-3) Pp 203-234.

Psathas, G. (1995). Conversation Analysis: The Study of Talk-in-Interaction. Thousand Oaks Calif.: Sage.

Raudaskoski, P. L. (1999). The Use of Communicative Resources in Language Technology Environments: A Conversation Analytic Approach to Semiosis at Computer Media. Åbo Akademis Tryckeri.

Raymond, G., Lerner, G. H., & Heritage, J. (2017). Enabling Human Conduct: Studies of talk-in-interaction in honor of Emanuel A. Schegloff. Amsterdam/Philidelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.

Rintel, S. (2013a). Video Calling in Long-Distance Relationships: The Opportunistic use of Audio/Video Distortions as a Relational Resource. The Electronic Journal of Communication / La Revue Electronic de Communication (EJC/REC) Special issue on Videoconferencing in Practice: 21st Century Challenges, 23 (1&2)

Rintel, S. (2013b). Tech-tied or tongue-tied? Technological versus social trouble in relational video calling. 46th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences. DOI: 10.1109/HICSS.2013.512

Rogers, S., Lunsford, M., Strother, L., & Kubovy, M. (2003). The Mona Lisa effect: Perception of gaze direction in real and pictured faces. In S. Rogers & J. Effken, Studies in Perception and Action VII (pp. 19–24). Lawrence Erlbaum.

Ruhleder, K., & Jordan, B. (2001). Managing complex, distributed environments: Remote meeting technologies at the Chaotic Fringe. First Monday.

Sacks, H. L., Schegloff, E. A., & Jefferson, G. (1974). A Simplest Systematics for the Organization of Turn-Taking for Conversation. Language, 50(4), 696–735.

Scheflen, A. E. (1964). The Significance of Posture in Communication Systems. Psychiatry, 27, 316–331.

Schegloff, E. A. (1968). Sequencing in Conversational Openings. American Anthropologist, 70(6), 1075–1095.

Schegloff, E. A. (2007). Sequence Organization in Interaction: A Primer in Conversation Analysis. Cambridge University Press.

Schegloff, E. A., & Sacks, H. L. (1973). Opening up closings. Semiotica, 8(4), 289–327.

Sidnell, J., & Stivers, T. (2012). The Handbook of Conversation Analysis. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.

Stommel, W., Goor, H. van, & Stommel, M. (2019). Other-Attentiveness in Video Consultation Openings: A Conversation Analysis of Video-Mediated Versus Face-to-Face Consultations. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 24(6), 275–292.

Stommel, W., Licoppe, C., & Stommel, M. (2020). “Difficult to assess in this manner”: An “ineffective” showing sequence in post-surgery video consultation. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 3(3).

Suchman, L. (2007). Human-Machine Reconfigurations: Plans and Situated Actions. Cambridge University Press.

Terplan, K., & Morreale, P. A. (2018). The Telecommunications Handbook. CRC Press.

Tuncer, S., Licoppe, C., & Haddington, P. (2019). "When objects become the focus of human action and activity: Object-centred sequences in social interaction", Gesprächsforschung: Online-Zeitschrift zur verbalen Interaktion, vol. 20, pp. 384-398.

Sylvaine T., & Haddington, P. (2020), "Object transfers: An embodied resource to progress joint activities and build relative agency", Language in Society, vol. 49, no. 1, pp. 61–87.




How to Cite

Due, B. L., & Licoppe, C. (2021). Video-Mediated Interaction (VMI): Introduction to a special issue on the multimodal accomplishment of VMI institutional activities. Social Interaction. Video-Based Studies of Human Sociality, 3(3).