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Communication Privacy

Management (CPM) Theory


Sandra Petronio
In reference to social penetration theory
Altman and Taylors theory sink its teeth on self disclosure as primary way to
develop close relationships.

openness is only part of the story

However..

We also have a desire for privacy.


Sandra Petronio AGREES *INSERT ting sound*

Revealing private information strengthens relationships.

However (again) it could stress your relationships if the person you disclose it
to cant handle the information and it can reduce your privacy.
Five core principles of cpm
1. People believe they own and have a right to control their private information.
2. People control their private information through the use of personal privacy
rules.
3. When others are told or given access to a persons private information, they
become co-owners of that information.
4. Co-owners of private information need to negotiate mutually agreeable
privacy rules about telling others.
5. When co-owners of private information dont effectively negotiate and follow
mutually held privacy rules, boundary turbulence is the likely result.
People believe they own and have
a right to control their private
information.
Disclosure of private information instead of self-disclosure

Four reasons
Private information we share to others isnt about ourselves.
Self-disclosure is associated with personal intimacy.
Motives for disclosing private information: relieve a burden, prevent a wrong, make an impression,
gain control or simply enjoy self-expression.
It has neutral connotation, as opposed to self-disclosure which has positive feel.
This directs attention to the content of whats said and how the confidant handles this
not-so-private information.
People control their private
information through the use of
personal privacy rules.
CPM as rule-based theory
We can best understand peoples freely chosen actions if we study the system
of rules they use to interpret and manage their lives.
Cpm is interpretive
Counters to an objective or scientific quest to discover universal laws that
accurately predict where people will draw their privacy boundary.
Factors that help develop our privacy rules
Culture differs on the value of openness and disclosure
Gender
motivation attraction and liking as interpersonal motives that can loosen
privacy boundaries that could not otherwise be reached.
Context traumatic events can temporarily disrupt the influence of culture,
gender, and motivation.
Disclosure came along when doing mundane activities which require no eye contact
because it offers normalcy and control
Risk/benefit ration we add up the benefits and subtract the costs of each
opinion in order to do what we think will do the best outcome
Benefits relief from stress, gaining social support, drawing closer the person
we tell, and the chance to influence others.
Risks embarrassments, rejection, diminished power, and everyone finding
out.
When others are told or given
access to a persons private
information, they become co-
owners of that information.
Cpm is a full-fledged communication theory
Person cant just consider self in decision to conceal or reveal.
disclosing
Collectively privacy boundary
Intersection of personal privacy of co-owners of private information, all of whom are
responsible for the information.
Co-ownership
1. disclosure must realize that the personal privacy boundary encompassing
information has morphed into a collective privacy boundary
Once you let the cat out of the bag, its hard to stuff him back

2. People tend to feel a sense of responsibility for that information.


doesnt mean, however, they perceive an equal responsibility

"once the information is known, others 'in the know' may have their own interpretation of how the information
should be managed."

3. those who had the information foisted upon them may be much more casual about
protecting it than those who sought it.
Co-owners of private information
need to negotiate mutually
agreeable privacy rules about
telling others.
This principle is pivotal.
From descriptive to prescriptive.
assumes that the privacy boundaries co-owners place around this particular
piece of information won't necessarily look the same.
focus on boundary ownership, boundary linkage, and boundary permeability.
Cpm is an insistence that disclosers and their confidants need to negotiate
mutual rules for possible third-party dissemination.
Mutually privacy boundaries
A synchronized collective privacy boundary that co-owners share
because they have negotiated common privacy rules.
Boundary ownership Who should decide?
The rights and responsibilities that co-owners of private information have to
control its spread.
Original owner should have the total control
Recipient = shareholder "fully vested in keeping the information according to
the original owner's privacy rules
Deliberate confidant
A recipient who sought out private information.
Doctors, professionals.
Reluctant confidant
A co-owner of private information who did not seek it nor want it.
Doesnt want the disclosure, doesnt expect it, and may find the revealed
information an unwelcome burden.
Boundary linkage
An alliance formed by co-owners of private information as to who else should
be able to know.
Major consideration: nature of pairs relationship.
When the revealer and recipient have a close, trusting relationship, theres a
good chance that the recipient will deal with the new information the way the
disclosure wants.
Boundary permeability how much information can
flow?
The extent to which a boundary permits private information to flow to third
parties.
Two types of barriers.
Closed, thick, or stretched tight
information is quarantined because public revelation would be highly
embarrassing for those in the inner circle.
Open, thin, or loosely held.
Information permeates them easily. As barriers to disclosure, they are a
facade. To the extent that privacy rules are supposed to check the flow of
insider information.
When co-owners of private
information dont effectively
negotiate and follow mutually held
privacy rules, boundary turbulence
is the likely result.
Boundary turbulence
Disruptions in Disruption of privacy management and relational trust that
occurs when collective privacy boundaries aren't synchronized.
the way the co-owners control and regulate the flow of private information to
third parties
turbulence can quickly destroy the trust between revealers and recipients
that has built up over time
Factors that can lead to turbulence
Fuzzy boundaries
Intentional breaches
mistakes
Fuzzy boundaries
Having no recognized boundaries and only a vague idea of revealers
expectations, advocates resort to using their own privacy rules to guide what
they say.
Intentional breaches
Sometimes those who are now-in-the-know understand that the original owner
will be horrified if they blab it about, yet they reveal the secret anyway. They
may do so to actually hurt the original owner or simply because breaking the
confidence works to their personal advantage.
leads to Confidentiality dilemma
The tragic moral choice confidants face when they must breach a collective privacy
boundary in order to promote the original owner's welfare.
Silence helps the oppressor, not the oppressed
mistakes
Not all boundary and relational turbulence comes from privacy rules out of
sync or the intentional breach of boundaries. Sometimes people create turmoil
by making mistakes, such as letting secrets slip out when their guard is down
after having a few drinks.
Errors of judgement
Miscalculations in timing