Technologies have changed the way we communicate with one another.
There’s now low verbal communication and even in businesses, transactions are been made without human communication.
Many, including our partner, Fishpools are now campaigning for outdoor recreation and activities to bring back real social life.
Internet and smartphones are the main catalysts in the evolution of human interactions, and artificial intelligence and the development of robots, and chatbots, it’s going to have a lasting impact on the way we live.
This is evident in today’s mobile communications.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Digital Communication
With the wide range of communication options like voice chats, video calls, messengers, social networks and others offered by smartphone makers and third parties, digital transformation in communication has come to stay.
While some schools of thought believes digital communication would not lead to an impoverishment of social contacts, many others have linked communication over devices to many social vices, and change in behavior, norms, and culture of the society.
While this can have lots of inherent benefits, there are also negative effects on our social life and health.
Some health researchers are also pointing in similar directions as the rate of depression, anxiety and related diseases especially mild mental illnesses are becoming higher.
They now suggest we spend more time outside with real people.
Benefits of Internet Communication
Let’s now look into some of the pros and cons of digital communication tools but firstly, the advantages of online conversations in communication processes.
Reaching out to a larger audience:
In person-to-person communication, the number of people you can reach out to is limited, unlike internet communication.
You can reach out to as many people as possible as information spread quickly and they don’t easily get out of circulation.
Print media, TV, and radio broadcasting had ever been the ways to reach a huge audience but information quickly gets out of circulation unless you keep active campaigns which usually cost many budgets.
Distance in communication is never a barrier:
While you need to keep people together in a location for a man-to-man form of communication, you can talk to people from different geographical locations online.
Even the frequencies at which your radio and TV transmissions are done are limited so also the distribution channels of print media are limited but digital communication has no boundary.
Digital Communication is processed fast, easier and cheaper
Communication is now more direct and immediate, making it easier for us to interact, send messages and get feedback quickly and also stay connected to people.
Different processing techniques are available for digital signals such as data compression, image processing, equalization, and channel coding, among others.
It’s also diversified. It allows facilities like video conferencing which save a lot of time, money, and effort, and can as well tolerate noise interference.
Some Threats of internet communication to social interaction
Like Newton’s law, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
With the aforementioned advantages of the internet and mobile technologies in communication, there are also disadvantages it’s causing us as humans.
Bullying over the internet
Hatred and racism can easily be propagated over the internet.
There’s now the issue of cyberbullying, people launching attacks on tribes, cultures, races and others.
Despite most social networks fighting this with advanced AI techs to detect hate speeches and block them from showing, the problem is not reduced to a reasonable low level.
People can easily create multiple fake accounts and use them for different purposes, using them for anything they want, which includes perpetrating bad things.
Since it’s difficult to track them, fake stories or reports, threats, and intimidating content can be posted and propagated to a large audience to bring about chaos.
Wrong interpretation of opinions
Body language is very important in communication, it can tell much about the message you’re given.
Communications over the internet can make people more aggressive as opinions can be interpreted differently but such might not happen if it had been a face-to-face conversation.
Invasion of Privacy
We now live most of our life over the internet.
We talk less to humans but easily expose happenings about and around us on social sites.
This means that we are revealing more about ourselves and around us to more people beyond who we know.
Your personal information can be easily viewed by people you don’t know and can also be sold to corporate organizations to market products and services to you.
There is more to do now to safeguard our properties. It’s not about living in a secure environment, providing security mechanisms within and around your house.
Cybercrime is another serious issue the world is battling with. As digital communication increases, so also online theft.
Hackers can breach digital devices for communication or platforms for interaction and get our details which can be further used for dubious acts which can result in financial losses to the victims or personal life.
It wastes time and reduces productivity
In verbal conversation, you can discuss lots of issues within a short period and easily agree on what to do but it’s not like that over the internet.
There are lots of distractions while communicating over the internet.
You may receive a new email, new chat messages from another platform, a pop-up notification, ads, and others that can distract you and make you spend more time on other things rather than the reason you’re online.
Some surveys have shown that people spend about 25% or more of their time online on social networks.
When these are non-work activities and are not bringing any value that can be monetized, then it’s much like a waste of time.
Employees who also got distracted by notifications of online messages spend more time on social networks which can reduce their performance and productivity in the office.
As many pros of digital communication so also the cons, it is therefore important to preach the gospel of using the internet and digital communication devices for productivity and spend reasonable time with humans to strengthen our values.