Has the internet hindered communication?

Stay with me here.

While, yes, I’m “connected” with more people than I ever thought possible, am I really communicating with any of them? Sometimes it seems like all interaction has been relegated to 140 characters or less (yes, I’m talking about you, Twitter). Everyone is so busy trying to think of something witty or unique or trendy or impressive to say, that they’re not really saying what they think. I’ve been just as guilty as anyone else of Twittering a quote – as if someone else’s words can better convey my ideas than my own!

I suppose that’s part of the reason I decided to start this blog. First, there’s more room – ’cause I like to use lots of words! And secondly, there’s opportunity for people to respond on specific topics. So, if anyone’s out there reading – what do you think? Have instant messaging, Twitter, and blogs increased communication or just the illusion of it?


3 Responses

  1. You know, I get that 80% of communication is non-verbal, so we miss out on that 80% by utilizing technology as our medium for communication. But, hey! Let’s not belittle that other 20%, guys!!! One of the things that has hindered real time, real live people from getting to “know” me over the years is that people “don’t know what I’m thinking.” People can read that 80% of my body language pretty well, because I don’t hide much with that. It’s the other 20% that is harder to understand with me, and with most of us.

    Well, my problem is that I have 10,000 random – or not so random- thoughts that run through my brain all the time. It’s impossible for me to share those with everyone, so it’s impossible for everyone to get insight into that quirky piece of the REAL ME. At least, it was impossible until IM, Twitter, FB, and all the other cool gadgetry came along. Thanks to IM and Twitter, some people who would never have had the opportunity otherwise have gotten to know me better.

    So, is all this an illusion? Well, the 120+ “friends” I now have on FB is an “illusion” of sorts… I mean, face it, we ALL know that I don’t have that many friends. But what is real is that I can use these mediums of communication to connect in new ways with the 8-12 real friends that I do have…and everyone else just gets to listen in!

  2. I think the internet has lessened the “pain of staying the same” so that we don’t pursue relationships. Like you said, we have this illusion that we’re connected…when my keyboard isn’t really very good company. : ) <– I smile more online, I thinnk.

  3. I posted a similar rant on my blog, when Ken first got his iPhone and I was suddenly not the only person he talked to on our dates. But also, he and I recently had a discussion about how we cannot have deep discussions online while we’re apart. You say so much through body language (80% I think), so that means online, you’re only getting 20% of the communication I’m giving! So, even if I type what I’m doing or my facial expressions, you don’t get it all (emoticons can lie!).

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