I Changing Role of Communication in the 21st Century

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How many times have you been out to dinner or other social function talking with people only to have them abruptly stop the conversation to answer their mobile or to respond to some form of text or email? How many times have you been in a meeting and experienced the entire meeting being momentarily disrupted by a phone call, even if you or the other person didn't actually answer it? Just the other night I got and deserved a lashing when I picked up my mobile to check email while waiting for dinner to arrive. Are the new modes of communication and social networks available to us making us more anti-social and rude? Today we have the choice of voice, video, text, instant message, social networks, gaming networks, Skype, Google Voice, voice enabled Twitter and Facebook etc. These choices and the advances in mobile communication devices are responsible for this communication paradigm shift. The ability to take all this communication with you has changed us as much, or more, than the communication applications themselves. The way we treat or interact with one another socially has forever changed. Is that by choice or due to the current state of communication tools? Once upon a time, face to face or by phone were our primary modes of communication. The person(s) communicating would more naturally be paying full attention to those in their presence or on the phone. Today, many prefer to text or email a person rather than call them. Why is that? I've talked to friends, family (e.g. my kids), thought about my own habits, and monitored social network communications discussing it. It could be the desire to "control" the time spent in or dedicating attention to the conversation. You don't have to gracefully hang up or walk away from the person to terminate or interrupt the conversation. The communication is less dedicated, allowing for gaps or pauses in the interaction. Texting, email, and social network communications appear to be taking priority over communicating with...
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