An article in last Sunday’s New York Times caught my attention. The headline read, “Don’t Call Me, I Won’t Call You”. Pamela Paul discussed the demise of the telephone, making it sound like a quaint relic to be housed among the Smithsonian’s Pop Culture artifacts. Teenagers, of course, were at the forefront of this trend, but adults quickly have followed suit. Landlines, mobile, and voice mail have been replaced by texts and email. According to Nielsen Media, within the next three years people will be spending more for texting than talking on their cellphones. Even within people businesses like public relations, executives are more likely to communicate via email than picking up the telephone. They make appointments to talk. Many people do not even know how to check their voice mail.
I, for one, am frankly delighted. I’m not a fan of the phone. I like talking with people in person but would much prefer arranging those liaisons via email and text. According to Judith Martin, alias, Miss Manners, “Phone calls are rude, intrusive and awkward. I’ve been hammering away at this for decades. The telephone has a very rude propensity to interrupt people.”
As much as I don’t like the phone, I do like talking to my adult children who live in other parts of the country. According to the Times piece, “In our text-heavy world, mothers report yearning for the sound of their teenage and adult children’s voices.” So..what is your take on this change in social communication? Post a note here and let me know.