Friday, April 30, 2010

Are Phone Calls And Mail a Thing of the Past?

Do you still make an effort to send written, mailed thank you notes, letters or invites? In a world of advanced technology, many people don’t bother to send a stamped letter these days or even pick up the phone to say hello. It’s just too easy to communicate with our friends and loved ones via e-mail or even on some of the social networking sites. My family has a Facebook page to keep everyone updated with the latest news or family parties. As great as it is, it actually created an issue a few weeks ago. One family member claims they didn’t see an invite on Facebook and felt they should have received a phone call to let them know about the party. The host of the party assumed everyone would see the invite or hear about it “word of mouth.” So, I often wonder if technology is making life just a bit too impersonal.

I appreciate a phone call even though I’m guilty of taking the easier route these days with an e-mail. I have some close family members that will take the time to text, e-mail or send messages to my Facebook page, but they don’t pick up the phone. I had several exchanges the other day with a family member through Facebook, so I decided to call her so we could speak rather than go back and forth with messages. She wasn’t available to take my call and rather than return the call, she sent yet another message to say she was sorry she couldn’t chat at the time I called. I couldn’t understand it. Maybe she was afraid the phone call would take too long? I’m guilty of this myself. I have one family member that I don’t call unless I know I have at least 30 minutes to spare, which is rare. If I knew she was willing to just say a quick hello and make it brief, I’d probably call her more often. I just don’t have much time these days. But how did our parents make the time to stay in touch with friends and family? Are we just too lazy or is it true that life is busier for us than it was for our parents?

I love the fact that I can keep in touch with friends and family through e-mails and social networking, but I still appreciate hearing their voice and being able to have a real time conversation. As much as technology may have made our relationships a bit impersonal, it allows me to stay in touch more often. I must say, I’m really thankful for Skype as it allows me to see and talk to my parents and other family members on the other side of the country.

What are your thoughts on e-mails, texting and social networking? Do you think it replaces the phone call or do you still take the time to speak with your friends and family? Share your thoughts.

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