This post was prompted by a couple of things. First, a New Year greeting, posted by a fellow blogger:
“Celebrate the year. Even if 2010 has been tough for you, there must be something that is worth celebrating. Have a consider of all that has happened and I’m sure that something will spring to mind that you can celebrate and give thanks for it. Text someone to say thank you, jump on Twitter or Facebook and send a message to congratulate a friend on something in their year.”
With all due respect to the sentiment behind this, I admit to having a grumpy old man reaction to the exaltation to ‘jump on Twitter’ to give my friends some positive feedback. A supportive tweet is no match for congratulating them in person. And if you’ve been on the receiving end of messages like this, you’ll know that they can seem an impersonal and, frankly, cheap substitute for the real thing.
Second, a comment on my WikiLeaks post back in December. Rich K said:
“one thing that occurs to me is that the multitude of communication media available to us all make it incredibly easy to avoid ‘difficult’ or ‘honest’ conversations. So we email, text or IM, in fact anything to avoid a productive duplex conversation. IMHO we are getting worse, not better, at leadership and communication”
Over the last few years I have bemoaned the impact of communications technology on our relationships with other people, especially at work. In this post I’m attempting to structure my objections into something a little more coherent; blog readers will be the judges of my success.