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Destination Online Travel Reviews An argumentative and textual genre perspective A dissertation presented by Silvia De Ascaniis Supervised by Prof. Lorenzo Cantoni Submitted to the Faculty of Communication Sciences Università della Svizzera italiana for the degree of Ph.D. in Communication Sciences December 2012 2 Abstract Information and communication practices relating to tourism, as they occur in the frame of the so-called web 2.0, constitute a peculiar context where communicative interactions assume specific features. Prospective tourists face several challenges when making travel decisions because of the very nature of tourism products, which are intangible and perishable, and because of the extraordinary variety of available options. The outcome of decisions concerning tourism products, thus, can hardly be foreseen and cannot be substantially changed; it implies a high level of uncertainty and a certain risk. In the case of experiential goods, the most influential source of infor...