Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Remember My Voice

People are getting more and more antisocial each and every day. With the internet booming, people can choose to actually never leave their houses. Friends don't have to talk to each other-they don't have to share a conversation; they can simply E-Mail or IM.

I remember when I was a freshman in college in 1994 I was just learning about E-Mail and chat rooms. It was so foreign to me that I could simply type a message to someone on the other side of the country instead of calling them. Many times, I opted to finagle a way to raise money to make the call instead of having an E-Mail only relationship.

Yesterday it really hit home for me because I got several phone calls in the office from people who needed to speak with me. I found myself getting frustrated and thinking, "It would be so much easier and faster if they'd just E-Mail the request like I've asked them to." Now, those of you who are familiar with my office and my role may know that this is really true-that sending an E-Mail is the best and fastest way to get to me. But that's not really the reason I was upset. I was upset because people kept trying to talk to me.

I've been sucked in. As I started thinking about my personal life, I realized there really are only 2 people I talk to on the phone on a regular basis: Middle Sister Mags and Mr. CM. There are occasional talks with Judy and random friends-but for the most part, all of my family and friends communicate through E-Mail or IM. We even type on our phones instead of calling sometimes.

How sad is it that I haven't heard my oldest friend's voice in 2 years-the last time I ventured to Jersey to see her and her family. Or that my best friend in Florida just got engaged and I E-Mailed her and sent a card, but didn't call-even though I have a cell phone which has a bazillion minutes and the call would be free.

My fear is that eventually our society will be so into E-Mail that no one will actually know how to speak to each other. Conversations will be shorter, laughter replaced with "L-O-L" (which, incidentally, kids already say!) and the only way you'll remember my face is because you have a picture of me stored in your acid free box.

Sad, isn't it?


C-Unit said...

Thanks a lot Mags! Im writing a paper trying to prove the internet and email is a good thing. THIS is not helping! You are NOT the only one who feels this way. There are soo many articles about this, that I am having a hard time finding one that doesnt include this point. You are absolutely right!

Mags said...

Oops...hopefully your professor isn't one of my reader!!!


One who listens said...

Hmmmm.. Very true. I am becoming allergic to people talking directly to me regarding work, because I'll only forget it.

It's best, if you want me to do work, to give me a piece of paper with the work on it. Then I'll get a visual reminder every time I turn around.

But I'm not very organised (despite my book), so it might not get done at all. :S

wingnut said...

email is an interesting thing though. i have become a LOT closer with my brother and sister in law through that medium. it's done some incredibly good things toward knitting people together.