KKU Research Journal - Humanity and Social Science
ภาษาไทย | English

Volume 4 Issue 2 พฤษภาคม - สิงหาคม 2557

Exploring Identities of Thais by Means of Facebook Names Inquiry Approach
Piyaporn Punkasirikul (Lecturer at English Program, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Khon Kaen University)


       This study aims to investigate the origins of Facebook names of Thais in order to explore identities of them, the cultural patterns, and trends in the Thai society as reflected from these names. Sixty-two names of Thais were randomly selected from the researcher's Facebook friend list, then, they were analyzed and classified. Analysis in Facebook names and users' explanation about their invention of their Facebook names provides an understanding in the origins of Facebook names and the linguistic strategies used in the naming process. It is found that Facebook names of Thais in this current study are created from 7 sources: (1) self-related names, (2) media and famous people, (3) a person's self, (4) ideology and expectation, (5) mixed sources, (6) favorite objects, and (7) places. The largest category of the origins of Facebook names of the participants in this study is that of the self-related names. This finding indicates that the Thai Facebook users in this study present their true identities online. Besides, some of these Facebook names reflect a current political situation in Thailand, and some of them mirror Buddhist belief. It can be concluded that Facebook names of Thais reflect not only the users' self but also cultural and social contexts in Thailand. For the linguistic strategies employed in the naming process, 4 strategies are found in this study: (1) lexical modifications, (2) common lexicons, (3) transliteration, and (4) mixed strategies. Lexical modification is the highest in use. This suggests that Thai Facebook users in this study feel they have more freedom to express themselves on the internet by playing with the language both on sound and spelling.
Keywords: names and identities, online identities, Facebook names of Thais Course

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