It’s amazing how much time we spend texting. It’s completely normal nowadays to communicate with your thumbs, on a tiny keyboard, writing “words” which ten years ago would be unreadable.
How did this happen and why is it normal? Why do we suddenly jump on these trendy bandwagons without any knowledge of the effects we are actually causing?
We are pretty ignorant humans if we think the convenience of texting and the short cuts we take in communicating don’t have any serious consequences. Besides making us as dumb as a box of rocks, communicating on a tiny keyboard using “smiley faces” and abbreviated languages have other dire consequences that everyone should be aware of.
1.The absence of real human communication.
Think about it. You are typing through a phone. Not talking, typing. There is no voice inflection, no natural human pauses or reflection of thought. As you probably have witnessed before, jokes or sarcasm can often translate horribly through text. Entire days can be ruined due to the misinterpretation of these texts. Relationships suddenly take a turn and you’re left wondering what the hell happened. That brief response suddenly becomes perceived as totally impersonal and shallow.
Think about it more. Even the laughter we convey through texting is not real human laughing we hear. We have to type out our laughter “HAHAHA” and of course “LOL.” I mean what are we becoming? Well of course we are beginning to resemble two robots communicating with one another. Our physical mannerisms, motions, and reactions are no longer necessary parts of communication. We don’t even bother to physically laugh anymore, since we know it won’t matter. The other person is not going to experience it, so hold our physical laughter in, and instead just text it out, “HAHAHA.”
2.Men VS Women
If you watch young girls nowadays you have to wonder how many phones they go through in a year with the amount of rapid fire physical thumb pressure they apply on their keypads for seemingly hours on end. While some guys aren’t too far behind, generally guys will have shorter back and forth responses. Their way of communicating involves getting the message across and that’s it. While women tend to share more while getting deeper into the message and the implications, rather than just simply relaying it.
The conflict arises when men and women are texting one another. Over the phone and in person the voice, body language and mannerism can project a better picture of one’s communication and meaning with the opposite sex. But with texting there is none of that. So male texts appear to many women as brief and impersonal, translating over to the feeling that the guy might not be that interested in them. They are not “investing the time.” While women who text can be very chatty, but the minute that they send something brief, the guy goes ballistic and wonders what he did wrong! No doubt a ton of relationships have been sabotaged or took a wrong turn all because of how the opposite sex interpreted a certain text message.
3.Your Exploding Ego.
Well don’t you feel important. You’ve been back and forth texting someone and now you decide to stop, knowing that you are leaving the other person hanging. It’s a form of “getting the last word in.” You know if you stop texting, put your phone in your pocket, you’ve essentially “turned off” that person. Wow, what power you have!
This is how big our egos have gotten. To the point of exploding as we suddenly feel we have the power to turn another individual off. In the physical world you couldn’t get off that easy. You would physically have to walk off, a much braver action. Even verbally, you have to find a way to end the conversation and the phone is hung up, allowing the other person closure, as opposed to leaving someone hanging. And that person left hanging through unanswered texts, goes through all kinds of emotions – abandonment, shame, embarrassment, and anger. And your ego can cause all of that in a person by simply non-physically ignoring them!
4.The SEEN Alert
On iPhones this is called the “Read Receipt” and on Facebook it’s a “Seen” alert that notifies you when someone has seen your message. This is another easy, non-physical tool your ego can use to establish dominance over another. Most of the time the Seen Alert is used to show the person that they are purposely ignoring you. The Read Receipt will also play tricks with your mind as you may actually feel guilty for not responding right away so you take time out and respond, while at the same time becoming angry regarding the pressure to respond, and the response itself may end up being brief and impersonal instead of more thoughtful had you waited, allowing more time to compose a better response.
Again, all of this stupid, unneeded drama due to texting!
5.Distrust, Deception and Drama.
How many times have you gotten this response: “Sorry, I didn’t get that text you said you sent me.” Or the classic: “My phone’s been turned off all day.” Now, how many times have YOU used that response and it was totally deceptive? You likely have, as after all it’s a lot easier to say that your phone was turned off than try to explain that you simply did not feel like responding to the person in the moment. That type of response would elicit resentment, where as the phone turned off excuse would be more understanding and pleasant. Whatever the rationale, we’ve all become totally distrustful and deceptive due to texting. Of course since neither party can give the other proof, there’s always that little voice that goes off in your head, wondering if they really did get that text. This in turn leads to even more drama. Again, unnecessary drama which wouldn’t have happened in the physical realm of communication.
6.Garbled communication which has no end.
Humans interact with one another with a greeting, followed by sentences, expressions, body language and other physical communication traits. Sometimes one party is a listener and the other is more the talker. When the communication is over, a wave goodbye is had, a phone is hung up, and so forth.
With texting the words are garbled, abbreviated symbols are used and actual smiley faces are employed. There is no telling if one person is actually the listener, so a back and forth barrage of garble is expected. And then suddenly it just seems to end. No goodbye or closing, just one last garble of syntax and then on to another texter an hour later.
What separates us from cyborgs is our openings and closings. As humans we greet one another, and provide closure when our human interaction is over. Robots on the other hand just send data to one another. Abbreviated syntax relaying messages. When the data stream ends, it’s over.
See where I’m getting with this? We are acting more and more like impersonal, non-human communicating cyborgs. Many have proclaimed that one day the computers will end up taking over. If so, our addiction to texting and our cyborgian-like behavior will certainly make that take-over extremely easy! We are so dazed and dramatized by our technology that our glazed over eyes can’t see the disservice that we are doing to one another when it comes to ignoring true human interactions and real life communications.