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Texting & Emailing: Is it time to let the phone call die?

Discussion in 'The OT' started by Lord Vader, Jul 31, 2010.

  1. Lord Vader

    Lord Vader Supreme Member

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    This became a topic of discussion on the Blackberry crackberry forums where many believe that texting and Emailing is the way to go these days, and that the phone call conversation should just go away. I, on the other hand, believe that what society needs is more phone call communication. This doesn't mean it will be as prevalent as in the days before texting and Emailing. It just means that Clive Thompson's desire for the death of the phone call is, well...just plain ridiculous.

    Having been in the business world before changing careers to become a teacher, I have spend my entire adult life in a field dealing with constant human interaction and communication, and let me tell you--texting and Emailing has resulted in an impersonal world filled with people too impatient, too lazy, and too apathetic to communicate on a normal, personal level. Truthfully, this is sad.

    Once in a while, I want to talk live with a friend of mine. I don't want to be trying to press tiny buttons on my Blackberry's keyboard (to a maximum of 160 characters, moreover--3rd party SMS extender programs notwithstanding) or an iPhone's jittery touch sensitive keyboard in order to get across something that I wish to discuss.

    Perhaps the greatest limitation of texting and Emailing is the inability to accurately convey emotions. Forget the BS emoticons. It is still very easy for the recipient of a text or Email to misconstrue what is supposed to be sarcasm, facetiousness, humor, or something similar. In a live phone conversation, this problem rarely, if ever, occurs.

    Give me a live conversation any day, and stop trying to hide behind the impersonality of texting and Emailing, both of which I use quite often, but neither of which I want to totally replace a live phone call.
     
  2. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    Maybe I'm just too old but I can't imagine voice conversation dying in favor of text and email. I just got off the phone with my favorite three year old and as smart as she is she still can't text.
     
  3. hdtvfan0001

    hdtvfan0001 Well-Known Member

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    Agree with all those points, and unfortunately see the downside of all of them firsthand daily.

    Having seen e-mail and texting used as an impersonal "crutch to communicate" thousands of times, Part II of that social injury is the demise of basic people skills through the coddling of non-verbal discussions. I know of a few people who simply will respond by text message only.

    I do reams of electronic communications daily, and yet, also do many hours of personal phone and face-to-face discussion.

    E-mail, SMS, and other communications have their place, and are not totally evil or anything like that...but too many people rely upon them as their primary form of communication, reducing primary communication skills through dormancy. Shame.
     
  4. longrider

    longrider Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    I think you are right about it being an age thing, I cant see phone conversations going away. I do text a fair amount but if it is more than 2 messages each way I will pick up the phone and call. However I have friends in their 20s who frequently wont answer the phone but if I text I get an immediate response. You can see the preferred method of communication
     
  5. Lord Vader

    Lord Vader Supreme Member

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    To these lazy mopes I can say: "Wait until you try to find a real job and the employer realizes your communication skills are lacking."

    I came from the business world where I was in sales and sales management. I recruited, interviewed, hired and fired, etc. I was absolutely unforgiving when it came to a resume that had a typo on it, or a cover letter that had run-on sentences, incomplete sentences, poor grammar, etc.

    As a teacher, I have seen an increasingly greater number of uses of Internet lingo, where my kids think it's OK to write the Internet abbreviations instead of the real word. I often have to remind them that such verbage has its place and time, and the classroom is not it.
     
  6. fluffybear

    fluffybear Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    My mother passed away shortly after Christmas. My brother decided he was to busy to call and wish Mom and Dad a Merry Christmas and instead sent them and email card while I picked up the phone on Christmas Morning and had the opportunity to speak with them both. None of us knew that mom would be gone just 3 days later.
    I can not imagine how I would feel (let alone how my brother must have felt) knowing the last communication I had with someone was something so impersonal as email. I can get comfort out of knowing that at least she had one last opportunity to speak with her grandchildren and talk about Christmas morning and opening their presents, etc.

    Sure we could put a video attachment in an e-mail or use am IM service like Google Talk but it is not the same in my opinion. With video attachment, it's not two-way communication and is not necessarily received or read immediately. The only thing that can honestly replace the feeling you get from speaking with someone over the phone is actually being there in person.
     
  7. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    I agree with you, LV. the younger generation will bring a lot to the business world but not before they are forced to learn how to communicate in mire traditional ways.
     
  8. Lord Vader

    Lord Vader Supreme Member

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    The youth can bring energy, desire, technological prowess, ideas, and more, but what good is that if they cannot properly communicate?
     
  9. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    I'm hoping things like Skype (video calls) and Facetime bring back the somewhat face-to-face conversation. It'll be awhile before that reaches business to replace the impersonal text, email or fax.
     
  10. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I always find myself amused by all the times in my 40 years of being told that I was too anti-social and that I needed to "get out" more...

    I am amused because most of those "social" people seem to be flocking to twitter and text-messaging like moths to a flame... and all these people with thousands of Facebook "friends" that they never meet or talk to in person, and apparently don't even want to call on the phone.

    Also... for about 2 weeks I was getting text messages from some guy who apparently had a wrong number... and he then started asking me why "I" had suddenly stopped replying to him... which told me that he had no clue he was texting the wrong person AND apparently had not tried to call the person who was apparently so much of a friend to text all that time.

    Anyway... as I get older I find that I'm 10x more social (as in I prefer to meet and talk to actual people) than people who used to tell me I needed to get out more.

    What's changed?

    I still go out as much as I ever did (which isn't much)... but everyone else seems to be choosing to lock themselves inside and type on the keyboard instead of talking to the people in person when they can.

    It's like real-life has become a bad Dilbert cartoon parody of itself!
     
  11. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I wish this were 100% true ... but these new guys with their Twitter, Facebook and YouTube lifestyles are taking over ... and the major brick and mortars are letting them. Hopefully the younger generation can also use traditional means to do business - but those of us in the older generation who don't want to get with it will be left behind.
     
  12. Lord Vader

    Lord Vader Supreme Member

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    Like it or not, I fear that to be true.
     
  13. markfp

    markfp Legend

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  14. Richard King

    Richard King Hall Of Fame

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    What's this "texting" thing of which you speak? ;)
     
  15. hdtvfan0001

    hdtvfan0001 Well-Known Member

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    Not here....Twitter, Facebook and YouTube are all banned and blocked by corp policy at our Fortune 500 company based on "security risks". That's 22,000 folks firmly prohibited from using desktop and laptop PCs to access any of those services on company devices.

    The Gen Z's haven't taken over quite yet.
     
  16. Nick

    Nick Retired, part-time PITA DBSTalk Club

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    The...
    Is that Gen Z, or Gen Zzzzz?!
     
  17. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    That's good. Apparently the old guard is still in control and the company has not decided that they need to reach out to the "new generation" in their marketing and public affairs.

    I'm still annoyed at generation Y ... as in "why". It's because we said so! Can you at least wait until our generation is gone before taking over the world? :)
     
  18. hdtvfan0001

    hdtvfan0001 Well-Known Member

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    The old guard in charge was replaced 4 years ago by much younger 30-somethings. They initiated the ban.

    Gen Y = entitled to everything...

    Gen Z = entitled to everything and know everything...
     
  19. wilbur_the_goose

    wilbur_the_goose Hall Of Fame

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    I'm driving south on the NJ Turnpike today. Traffic is slow. Two cars are pulled off to the right, obviously with each other.

    I couldn't believe it -- these people were texting each other from 10' away.

    Amazing (and sad!)
     
  20. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Unbelievable! They actually pulled over to text? That's remarkable!

    I pulled off a rural highway on the edge of town to make a phone call once and had a sheriff's officer stop and question me. Apparently it was the first time he saw someone stop to make a call.

    The cars you saw probably should have just used CBs or the Family Radio Service. But if phones are what they have I can see them using that technology. It would make more sense to make contact in voice mode.
     

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