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Old 04-19-2010, 09:58 PM
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Default Electronic Communication in Today's World.

Today, we were having a debate in the IRC channel on the merits of electronic communication, such as facebook, MSN, Skype, even cell phones. Eltu was a main proponent against these forms of communication and his argument is quoted below.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eltu

Today people grow up in an entirely different environment than before. In past generations you could spend time with people when actually being with them - when you spent time with people you did it face-to-face.

Now, there is a social need of ALWAYS being accessible. It doesn't mean you always have to talk, but to be "accepted" (in most cases today) you have to be ACCESSIBLE, all the time. In school/work, when you get home, everywhere. When getting home today after spending the whole day talking to people, you log into msn/facebook etc, to keep talking to these people. If you do not, then people think something has happened.

And if you you do not use any of these things at all, it is almost impossible for you to be as socially active as the rest of the people you know.

Today, electronic communication is a REQUIREMENT to be socially accepted in most cases. Most people feel a need to "fit in" just out of fear to be left out, and they are because of this forced to use electronic communication.
Now over to communication with old friends etc. Meeting friends has lost its meaning to a very high degree nowadays.

In a society when you can talk with ANYONE you know, in a matter of SECONDS - then you lose the meaning of meeting someone for "real." When you simply talk with a friend using text, not really meeting with the person - just as Mune said - speaking to someone face to face is a lot more rewarding, there's tones of voice, body language... You can get to know a few more of their traits.

Nowadays, friendship can be reduced to numbers, invites, comments and text messages. Where is the REAL feeling of community, spending real time with people? Where is the society where people could find the happiness of seeing someone for the first time in a very long time?
When we are using electronic communications all the time, will we ever get back to actually giving effort into meeting with someone?


What are your thoughts on the subject? Personally, I am for electronic communication though I would like to see a few more responses before I outline an argument.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:01 PM
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Thanks for posting my opinions in this matter.

It would be interesting to see what the rest of you think of this.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:06 PM
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The only electronic communication that I have is through forums or Teamspeak. I don't have a cell phone, don't have MSN, yahoo and I don't hardly use Facebook anymore.


It is much more rewarding to meet someone in person and visit and talk than over the phone or on internet. I think that electronic communication has its uses but it has gotten overly dominant compared to the good old sit down and visit.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:06 PM
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My thoughts, are as I said in IRC:
So many of my best friends are here. I've never met them IRL, even though I'd like to.

Even friends IRL, I talk to mainly on the internet or by text sometimes, because I don't have the time or money to take a 45 minute bus ride there and back just to ask someone if he wants to go to a gig. Also, I HATE turning up anywhere uninvited. It's fine if you live right next to them, but I don't. I see them all IRL enough anyway, when I go out, it's not like it's the only way I talk to them.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:09 PM
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I agree with Eltu for the most part. All our electronic gadgets, facebook, etc has eroded our sense of community. In fact, it has made us more isolated from each other. How many of us have tried to become friends with our neighbors? I'm just as guilty as everyone else in that sense. I haven't. I don't get a chance to. Another reason why we have become isolated is our jobs, etc. Many of us work 40 or more hours a week just to pay bills. So much so that several of us hardly get a day off and when we do, its usually to catch up on errands that need to be done, etc. That adds to the isolation.

Ironically, the internet, cellphones, etc have enabled us to talk to others who we would never get a chance to talk to "in real life." You can build a friendship via the internet, etc but there will always be something missing. That "something" is the face to face interaction with the other person. It gets even more complicated if it is a romantic relationship.

I met my husband online. We chatted on the internet and the cellphone for hours. We knew each other's voices, inflections, etc but we also knew there was something missing. If we wanted our relationship to solidify and go further then we needed to meet in person. Nothing else would do. It was only when we met that we knew for sure, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that we had found the right one. Both of us were already in love but it couldn't go any further without that face to face meeting because there is so much that is picked up of a person's temperament and personality through body language that can't be picked up on a phone or the internet.

Eltu is right. Cellphones and internet are tools, nothing more. They can be used to foster greater community but they can't be the only means.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Human No More View Post
My thoughts, are as I said in IRC:
So many of my best friends are here. I've never met them IRL, even though I'd like to.

Even friends IRL, I talk to mainly on the internet or by text sometimes, because I don't have the time or money to take a 45 minute bus ride there and back just to ask someone if he wants to go to a gig. Also, I HATE turning up anywhere uninvited. It's fine if you live right next to them, but I don't. I see them all IRL enough anyway, when I go out, it's not like it's the only way I talk to them.
You have a legitimate reason HNM. Texting one of your friends and asking if you want to go to a concert, etc is fine and that is where an electronic device is helpful. Having friends online is fine too. Its just sad that there isn't more interaction with people face to face. My sister and her husband are very funny. I have seen them IM'ing each other while they are sitting next to each other! My brother in law always has some gadget with him. Its funny but at the same time its weird.
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Last edited by Sacred Tsahaylu; 04-19-2010 at 10:43 PM. Reason: merge
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:14 PM
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HumanNoMore, ask yourself - why do you hate turning up uninvited?

It is an effect of today's society - people avoid closeness (not saying you do, but that is the case in this society).

Back in the old days there was a closeness that does not exist today. People knew each other in a way almost nobody do now. Nowadays we have social "rules" which puts us apart from each other. Turning up uninvited causes uncomfortability.

Today everything has to be arranged and planned... which saddens me very much.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:27 PM
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I really don't avoid closeness. Really, I've never been that great in those situations, it's probably more like that. IRL friends are different to all my friends here though. They do not See, there is so much I share with all of you I never could with them, I just wouldn't know how and would be afraid of what they think.

As for isolation itself, I'll admit, I haven't tried to either, not that I'd really want to with my neighbours
I do think that people have become very isolated, but I disagree on the cause. I think it's more because of how everyone only cares about themselves, about working, making money, because it's the only thing they know
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:30 PM
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I didn't say *you* avoid closeness - but this is the kind of society everyone grows up in here, where they from birth are taught social "rules" that in fact separates people from each other.

Sad but true.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:49 PM
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My feelings on the subject are very different from Eltu's to be honest. I love electronic communication. It allows me to contact friends who I don't see much since we go to different colleges. It allows me to talk to people I have met from AF. It allows me to talk to family. Skype especially is a great tool. Rather then just talk to family, I can even see them, which does not happen very often.

Facebook is yet another great tool. As I said, it lets me keep in touch with old friends, contact those who I have moved away from etc. For adults, it lets them contact friends from their childhood. I think that what some are saying is true, there is less a sense of closeness. But, I think the pros outweigh the cons. Electronic tools are fast and easy to use, great for a person who lives a busy life like me. I don't have the time to hop on a bus or airplane and visit, so I rely on the internet.
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:54 PM
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Peoples homes are like their sanctuaries, there they can do whatever the hell they want. Thus, it's considered almost intrusion to show up uninvited. It's impossible to just turn someone away if you meet them face to face uninvited without hurting them. I for one would get annoyed if people showed up at my door several times a day, people I meet and talk with every day at school, over Skype, on facebook etc.

Some discussions are definitely limited to face-to-face conversations only, granted, but in some cases the opposite can be a good thing. It's easier to correct mistakes (If you realize you've written something that might sound really weird, you can erase it and rephrase it, for instance. That makes it good when you don't know the other person that well, one mistake could have catastrophic effects that early on.)
Anyway, like I was saying, there are times where I cannot be arsed to talk with people, and if they show up at my door, what am I gonna say?
Quote:
So hey, I know you've paid the bus ticket and have spent the latest hour or so on the bus, but I'm kinda tired today so.. bye!
Nah.

Talking on Skype is a much better idea, face-to-face conversation is only really required when discussing something very serious, or deep. It is also to be preffered every now and then, I mean, it doesn't hurt to meet up with your friends every now and then after school, but I really think neglecting online communications totally is pointless. It's a really good way to have smaller discussions, ask someone for help with something, etc.

Getting facebook doesn't mean you're automatically accessible 24/7 - nor that you should be. I sometimes go weeks without logging into facebook, because I don't need to. If someone wants something they can tell me in school, or by SMS. It's ridiculous to force them to go all the way across town (way over an hour if you're gonna include wait times too) just to say hi.

TL;DR: The IRC Quotes Thread.
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:29 AM
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I like what Xynth said - face to face is nice, and there are some things that are best said face to face, but really isn't required.

Again, being contactable - you don't HAVE to not use things just to not be contactable some of the time. I admit, I really don't use much, just email, facebook and my phone (my phone is important since I don't have a landline though, lol), but that doesn't mean I can always be contacted either. Sometimes it's nice to be on my own.
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Old 04-20-2010, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Human No More View Post
Sometimes it's nice to be on my own.
This. Which is why turning up uninvited would annoy me
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:17 PM
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I actually like being contactable at all times, though I've recently started to realise the value of seeing my friends in person.
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Old 04-23-2010, 04:34 PM
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Havent read all the replies here so sorry for repeated information and Ill keep this brief.

I agree that meeting someone IRL has much more meaning. You get much more attached to someone and can form a much stronger bond with them. Which is somewhat hindered by electronic communication. It makes it so easy to always talk with someone that the time you do get with them IRL isnt quite as special anymore.

This said I can easily go either way pro/con on the subject to be honest.
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Old 05-02-2010, 02:24 AM
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I personally love world-wide electronic communication and all of the benefits it brings. It makes the world a lot smaller and a lot less isolating. I live in England and met my current partner at a festival in Germany. Whilst we both live in England, we lived on opposite sides of the country, at the time. We kept in contact via online communication and I eventually moved in with her. I now use electronic communication to keep in contact with my friends and family that I've moved away from. I also use my Facebook/MSN/mobile phone to arrange the times and places I'm going to meet my friends IRL. Widespread electronic communication has brought me closer to my friends and family and certainly hasn't disrupted my sense of community or gotten in the way of me spending a lot of time with my friends in person. I'd be a lot lonlier in this world if couldn't communicate with my friends and family regularly whilst being hundreds of miles away from them for the majority of the year.

I guess it all depends on how you let the communication affect your life. It's been very positive and beneficial, for me .
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