The curse of technology

Technology is taking over our lives to the point where we communicate electronically rather than face to face.
Technology is taking over our lives to the point where we communicate electronically rather than face to face. Alistair Brightman

THE world has gone mad.

And technology is to blame.

We are more connected than ever, but not to each other.

We interact with multiple devices hourly, all designed to bond, inform, stimulate, educate and entertain.

But when it comes to interacting with humans, it can be more difficult.

This scenario prompted communication specialist Miti Ampoma to write The Innovative Communicator.

"In the past five years in particular, I have noticed the increasing lack of human communication, human interaction and almost the 'avoidance' of building strong deep human relations as the norm," she said.

"This human aspect is being increasingly replaced by technological communication.

"So in my experience, some young people in particular, find it much easier to communicate by social media, be it Facebook, Twitter or text for instance, rather than have a face-to-face, look-me-in-the-eye conversation with another human being.

"It's as if, human communication and interaction is being jeopardised rather than being enabled by the prolific options we now have with information technology."

Ms Ampoma said a recent UK study found modern technology was making face-to-face human communication redundant, something she wanted to challenge in her book.

"At the end of the day, we are built for human relationships. It is our interdependency and true connections with other human beings that makes us feel valued and helps us flourish," she said.

She said the reason for the disconnect was because social media and technology was making us lazy and allowing us to opt out too easily.

"The devices may be quicker, easier and more convenient but they are not necessarily the best way, depending on circumstances.

"Devices should support our relationships, but if they get in the way, then our lives can be poorer. Meaningful face-to-face communication is integral to human success."

An innovative communicator is: able to re-invent and add value in a constantly changing environment; bold and does things differently while staying grounded in common sense; good at building relationships; passionate about face-to-face communication being a cornerstone in the way they operate; and practical.

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"The worst is when I go into businesses where people sit next to each other all day but will email each other automatically rather than talk to ask questions or have a conversation! It means they barely know each other which impacts their ability to do their jobs as well as they should."

"We recently heard of a story where a driver doggedly followed his satellite navigator technology which led him down a remote deserted track and left his car with him in it, dangling dangerously suspended in mid-air off the edge of a cliff. He was rescued, in the nick of time."

"A friend recently confided in me that she and her husband now email or text each other while at home together, rather than talk face to face. She made no connection between her complaint that she felt 'disconnected' from her husband and the way they communicate."

Topics:  communication social issues social media technology

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