Has technology ruined human relationships? Having studied communications, specifically human interaction concerning all the senses and the innate need for them, I find that social media (SM) has changed the dynamics of how people communicate and it has been negative. Social media takes away verbal and non-verbal communication cues, such as voice inflections (tone, assertion, etc.), eye contact, body language, posture, and a myriad of other cues. These cues are needed in order to read, understand, and respond to our communication partner in appropriate and constructive ways. Without these dynamics, it becomes increasingly more important to be aware of who you are communicating with and the context of the communication itself (Goldsmith, 2010).
SM has become the quicker, easier, less painful way to communicate. If so, we are in trouble. How many people have experienced or heard of relationships that have ended over e-mail, texting, or tweeting? Remember, context is everything and the medium used to communicate is everything. Without hearing a voice, seeing a face, looking into eyes, holding a hand, and many other triggers, it is difficult to understand the context of a SM communication. One of two things must happen in order to have a successful SM communication. First, understand who you are communicating with and how they will interpret your communication. Second, set the stage for the communication. Remember, that there are a variety of personalities that we deal with on a daily basis. Lastly, slow down and take the time needed in order to have rewarding and effective social communication. Your family, friends, romantic interests, employer, employees, and business depends on it.
Read this bloggers post on the subject: Miscommunication, the bane of social media! Or is it just me?