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Communication Nation: How Communication Has Broken Down and What it Means For the Future

Do you ever miss the days when you’d call your friend to talk on the phone? Or maybe you’d go to her house to get the scoop on that boy she’s dating. At some point, it seems as though society has given up on interpersonal communication, and it could spell trouble for the future.

Let’s look at some examples

Text has replaced person-to-person communication

If you work in an office, you’re probably part of a group chat. Why? Because leaning over and talking to the person next to you is so last decade.

Think about the last time you had big news. Did you call or text? If you’re like most people, you probably texted. Those memes that say, “I don’t use my phone to talk” are on-point for most of the population.

Emojis have created a new language

Can you imagine a life without emojis? There would be so many misunderstandings. “Oh, that was a joke?? But there was no laughing emoji.”

Because we rarely talk to each other in person, emotion is completely lost. The person on the other end of your text doesn’t know whether you were laughing crying or angry when you texted something like, “you fool.” So we need emojis to replace emotion.

Social media gets confused with social life

Some people get so wrapped up in social media that they forget to actually enjoy their social life. When you’re out at a party and worried about getting the perfect shot for your Instagram instead of actually talking to people and having fun, there’s a communication breakdown.

If you’re worried that this is happening to you, try locking your phone in your pocket or purse for the next social event. It’ll be difficult, to say the least, but it’s a worthwhile exercise. It’s like any addiction, it needs treatment to get better. You have to work on putting down your phone and enjoying life.

Shorthand has replaced the art of the letter

We’re so used to writing shorthand that many of us have trouble forming complete sentences. Spelling? Forget about it. We have spellcheck. Commas? Who needs ‘em?

The English language seems to be changing from something with a little structure to something that’s barely recognizable.

Case in point:

I want to eat grandma.


I want to eat, grandma.

In one sentence, you’re a cannibal. In the other, you’re telling your grandma you’re hungry. Grammar is very, important and it’s something we can’t afford to lose if we want to communicate well.

Social anxiety disorders are on the rise

With more social media interactions and fewer in-person interactions, it’s no surprise that social anxiety is on the rise. Lack of communication with people face-to-face is creating a generation of humans who don’t feel comfortable interacting with actual people and prefer doing it digitally. The disorders that are created or worsened by this type of communication often get treated by the person themselves. People suffering from social disorders self-medicate by using drugs or alcohol to numb the pain. Although the problems may not be avoidable, technology is definitely not helping the situation,

Fortunately, there’s something we can all do: make an effort to hold more in-person conversations. You’ll learn a lot more about a person this way. And work on your writing skills, if that’s an area that you think needs improvement. You’ll communicate better and be more confident in your skills.

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Written by Rachel O'Conner

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