Every week there seems to be a new article or blog post telling us how the ‘art’ of conversation has been lost. They tell us that the invention and growth of social media and smart phones means that we aren’t talking to people anymore. The articles make reference to seedy chat rooms and faces in phones instead of paying attention to the conversation around them.
I for one am sick to death of hearing this. Conversations aren’t lost, people are still talking to other people, they are just doing it through a different medium. Sure technology has been advancing in leaps and bounds over the last few years, but I don’t think that it needs to be the doom and gloom that people are proclaiming it to be.
I’ll be the first to admit that I probably spend a bit too much time on social media. It’s the first thing I check in the morning and the last thing I read at night. However, I also have friends who I spend time with in real life. We hold conversations, we take photos of our kids and we generally have a good time. We don’t have our heads in our phones the whole time we are together.
I also have people who I count as friends from all over the world. I interact with these people online, through various social media platforms. Not all of our conversations are deep and meaningful of course, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t real conversations. These conversations aren’t less real because they aren’t being said face to face. Just like, on the flip side, online bullying isn’t any less real than face to face bullying.
Currently my best friends live at least 7 hours away and one lives in another country. None of us like talking on the phone. So without social media and technology, we would be forced to keep in contact via good old snail mail and we all know how reliable that is. I also met many of my good friends who I catch up with in real life online. Sure, some of it has come back to bite me on the arse but that could happen with anyone. Meeting someone through a mutual friend, work or any other traditional ways isn’t a guarantee that you will click with them.
I think that it is actually quite offensive to say that any conversation held online doesn’t matter because it’s not the same as face to face conversation. I find it offensive because some of the best support I have received has been from people I have met online. I will probably never get the opportunity to meet these people online and yet I still call them friends. When I mention them in my day to day life I call them friends.
The art of conversation isn’t lost, it’s just changing. The world is constantly changing, we just need to learn to grow with it.
Do you believe the art of conversations is lost?
Where did you meet your best friend?
I really like your point about online bullying. You can’t say that online bullying is just as bad as face to face if you discount the validity of an online conversation. They all count! I can hear your ranty pants going off in this post, it really shows and I love it.
Social media is just a new and different form of communication. It’s an adjunct, not a replacement, as you’ve said, and it can be used for good!!! I get bugged with teenagers communicating amongst themselves using social media and with texting when they are actually in the same place. That’s just weird!
Well said! I was just thinking yesterday how many online people I count as friends these days. I wouldn’t have a mothers’ group at all if it weren’t for the internet. So many new and stay at home mums need this outlet. Agree that we could all do with less screen time but it’s nice to feel part of something bigger too.
Yes you’ve nailed it, sure the way we communicate has changed but through the evolution of social media we can now have more conversations with a variety of people we might not have had access to before. Great post!
i agree, it’s just changing. Actually, I agree with everything you have said. As long as we look up from our screens and engage in the world around us, it doesn’t matter how you communicate.
I completely agree. It’s so much less isolating now that we can keep in touch with family and friends a long way away. I have more conversations than I ever did before and yes, I still see plenty of people in real life! #TeamIBOT
I love social media, I love the fact that I can chat with my cousins in London, Germany and Switzerland, sometimes all at once! I love how I can keep up with everyones news and photos of their families. Somehow the world doesn’t seem so large anymore.
I’ve managed to reconnect with a lot of my Dad’s side of the family because of social media and I love it!