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Target Audience
Target audience

The individual(s) whom a speaker intends or desires to address with a text. It is important to recognize that the individuals receiving (reading or watching) texts are not always the target audience, or the group for whom they are intended. Bell (1991: 91) breaks ‘the audience’ down into four sub-groups, ‘according to whether the persons are known, ratified and/or addressed by the speaker’. These groups are determined by the communicators' expectations and intent: ‘the target audience who is addressed, the auditors who are expected but not targeted, the over-hearers who are not expected to be in the audience and the eavesdroppers who are expected to be absent’ (ibid.: 92).

Communicators can easily misjudge the composition of their audience. This can offend over-hearers whose sensitivities ...

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