Sunday, March 1, 2009

Communication Breakdown

I'm on a tirade about text messaging. Again. I love it, I hate it. This is also a repost, so I'm sorry if you have already read it.

Some think that with the addition of computers and mobile phones it is easier than ever to communicate with the rest of the world. My personal thought on the matter is that our society is experiencing a communication breakdown.

I’ve said it many times before, all connotation and intonation is lost in text. Things quickly become twisted when you are unable to hear the other person’s voice. You are left wondering exactly what it was they meant by that comment. Was it anger or sadness? Were they being sarcastic or callous? Running through these options in your head is tiring and frustrating.

I understand that there’s not always time in our busy lives for a phone call. It’s awesome to get a text message from someone in the middle of the day when they just want to say hi, or they love you, whatever. It shows someone is thinking about you. It’s great to get a joke. It’s convenient to remind someone to pick up milk on their way home or that the party starts at eight.

Please don’t try to tell me anything deeper or more important in a text, instant message, or e-mail. Even a hand written letter is better. Ideally, I would like to talk in person so I can see your facial expressions and body language. At least call me so I can hear the inflection in your voice.
Writing lol, jp/jk, : ) or ; ) are not substitutes for laughing, joking, smiling or winking. I stand helplessly by as civilization forgets how to communicate. *SMH*.


  1. YES! I am finding that too!
    I have a wry sense of humour that just gets twisted in writing. I fear I have offended a few of my most favourite bloggers because of it.
    My bugbear is one friend texts' watcha been up to?' I can't tell her in one line.
    I don't bother anymore.

  2. i HATE mobile phones !!
    I had one for 18 months and could not tolerate its intrusion on my life, so i threw it !!

  3. I do have a cell phone. I got it for in case of emergency situations. But the joke is that I never have it on so it would not help me!
    My biggest complaint with text messaging is the abbreviation that is used! I HATE IT!
    I agree so much about the inability to read expression or intonation into written word. I always try to be so cautious to not write something that could be misconstued.

  4. I don't get text messaging, but I do like email and IM. It's easier to "get" people if you know them really well. Otherwise, you're right - a lot does get lost in translation.

  5. I have to have 4 cell phones and unlimited talk & text for our family of four. My husband is on his ALL the time because of business. We just taught him to text. Even though he is the slowest texter at least the text is shorter than his calls. My girls: 18 & 20 kill me about the texting. They had over 2000 last month EACH! Seriously. It is ridiculous. They are going to have carpal tunnel (I am sure I have mispelled this but it isnt in my dictionary to check!) Our phone bill is ridiculous but I can't imagine not having them. Gosh, that would be $400 a month savings if we could ditch them!

  6. I don't even have text messaging; I don't even have a cell phone. A friend told me not long ago to not write to him anymore, because writing is inferior to talking in person which is inferior to talking on the phone. This closed down the communication between us about anything significant.

    Ohio is full, it seems, of bloggers. Maybe it's the crappy weather. Maybe you all stop writing when summer comes.

  7. X:-) i actually don't mind a text if it is info based (ie) like you said not emotional stuff (But this damn texting from the police that we are getting at the moment here is going tOO far in my book!) & phone calls are annoying to me tOO! X:-o! So i'm hard to please, but show me your face and i am happy X:-) Mind you i so love this bloggy world... so i wonder where that fits into the mix??? xox

  8. Cell phones are magic when my sixteen year olds grades dip we take the phone away and then his grades magically return.

    After three kids and all their buddies I have noticed that the more they electronically communicate the worse their one on one skill’s become.

    I can be an in your face guy but when I explain myself no one ever gets upset. But if I put the same conversation in an electronic format I end up with the whole world upset with me. I have already noticed that some of my Blogs and replies do not sound exactly like what they did in my head.