Technology and communication
Communication is one of the essential practices in life because it creates a connection that allows access between persons or places. Communication is inescapable, irreversible, complicated, and contextual in nature (Norris 26). Over the years, people have developed various ways of communication. Some have improved its efficiency while others have totally changed its orientation. The process of socialization has changed a lot, especially in the contemporary world of globalization.
Technological developments such as the internet and mobile phones have changed various aspects of interpersonal communication (Begley 16). Communication experts argue that sharing of information between people involves a number of skills that ought to be learned and maintained.
Interpersonal communication entails the use of strategies geared toward developing a connection and a certain level of understanding between two or more individuals (Norris 39). Evidently, technology has changed the concept of communication, as most people in the contemporary world prefer to use virtual means of interaction, such as social networking sites instead of one on one interaction.
Changes in interpersonal communication
In an individual’s life, communication skills are learned and developed at an early age. Many of the skills are acquired during infancy when a child observes the adults interact and repeat things said to them by their parents or caregivers (Rush 26). Interestingly, it is important to note that people acquire interpersonal communication skills, depending on the elements that define their lifestyle at the time when they are born (Begley 30).
This means that children born in this era of technological developments and the internet are most likely to have a different approach to communication compared to their parents and grandparents. Experts argue that technology has changed the world into a global village characterized by the ability of people to do important things, such as communication from the comfort of various digital devices (Rush 45). Technology has allowed people to multitask, increase their diversity, and share information faster than before.
The concept of communication develops on the idea of people sharing information through personal interaction. However, contemporary communication is characterized by a lot of text messages, fewer phone calls, and nearly nonexistent personal interaction (Norris 51). Other people have turned to mediated communication through social networking sites and virtual chat rooms. Today, people do not need to physically meet to have a conversation, as they can do that using instant communication services (Rush 48).
Studies have established that social media is one of the main elements of technology that have greatly influenced the way people communicate today. The reason for this is because they are popular, easily accessible, easy to use, and convenient compared to traditional means of communication, such as writing letters (Begley 60).
For example, a keen observation of behavior in popular meeting places such as restaurants, one can easily notice that most people tend to use their phones a lot in the middle of a conversation. People constantly use their phones to text and update their status on various social media. The mode of interaction has completely changed across all the age groups and communication platforms (Rush 61).
Effects of technology on interpersonal communication
Technology has had both positive and negative effects with regard to interpersonal communication. Experts argue that the kind of effect that new modes of interaction have affected the whole concept of communication is relative. This is influenced by factors such as different communication needs and levels of interaction (Karten, 100). One of the positive effects of technology has been the increased efficiency of communication. In the past, people used to communicate through letters, which took several hours or days to reach the recipient.
However, with the latest technology, one can send a message to a recipient and receive it instantly. In addition, the messages shared through texts or social media are more positive compared to traditional methods because of trust issues. Another positive effect has been the ability to make more friends and stay in touch with them easily despite their location across the world (Karten 108).
Through modern communication platforms such as social media, people have the ability to communicate with each other at any time without any delays (Begley 100). However, despite all the good impacts that technology has had on communication, a number of negative effects have also been experienced. First, technology has reduced the formality associated with interpersonal communication (Karten 122).
Communication experts argue that most young people lack the essential skills to express themselves in a one on one interaction because of a high reliance on technology. Most people also do not understand important things such as protocol and power structures when encountered by a situation that requires interpersonal communication (Karten 130). Another negative effect is the inability to develop and maintain strong relationships. Healthy relationships are built through constant physical interaction.
Technology powered communication is generally based on building an emotional connection. People only tend to share their emotions without having a shoulder to lean on when things get worse. Such relationships are hard to thrive because the involved parties do not have the essential skills to develop an intimate connection with the other (Karten 134). In addition, people communicating through media such as social networking sites tend to develop relationships with people who echo their opinions.
Begley, Kathleen. Face to Face Communication: Making Human Connections in a Technology-Driven World. Boston: Thomson Technology, 2004. Web.
Karten, Naomi. Communication Gaps and How to Close Them. New York: Addison- Wesley Professional, 2013. Web.
Norris, Mark. Communications Technology Explained. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 2000. Web.
Rush, Steve. Interpersonal savvy: Building and Maintaining Solid Working Relationships. New York: Center for Creative Leadership, 2013. Web.