Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Why Gen-Y Can't Read Non-Verbal Clues

An intersting article on the effects the new digital media may be having on us, especially young people. The article notes how one of the biggest issues in cross-cultural communication is not language, but understanding the subtleties and nuances of gestures and so forth. The next generation may be faced with similar struggles immigrants have, but in their own country.

Anyway, this was the quote that I best identified with;

With a device close by, attendees at workplace meetings simply cannot keep their focus on the speaker. It's too easy to check email, stock quotes and Facebook. While a quick log-on may seem, to the user, a harmless break, others in the room receive it as a silent dismissal. It announces: "I'm not interested."


I do this all the time. I have an incredibly short attention span and my mind wanders, and subsequently I've become a terrible listener. Not the best character trait for a pastor in training!!

13 comments:

Nick said...

Does this very post happen to be the result of a 'quick log-on' as a harmless break from the Greek study you're supposed to be doing?

geoffc said...

lol......yeh, totally.

michael jensen said...

you should try lecturing to this ...

SamR said...

Not convinced.

Main form of communication pre-telephone was written communication. And they also lived miles away from each other on pride and prejudice style farms. It was all text based communication then.

Then we had the telephone, radio and tv - all mediums emphasising spoken communication. Now text based is the new fangled thing again.

Soon enough facebook will support video and audio chat, and everyone will be lamenting the loss of writing skills - like they did when the telephone came on the scene, and we'll be back where we started...

geoffc said...

Hey Sam, what is it you aren't convinced of?

Main form of communication pre-telephone was written communication...It was all text communication then

lol, really? So they wrote letters to each other at the dinner table, to their bosses while at work and to their friends?

Maybe it was the main form of long distance communication, but it sounds like a massive stretch to say the main form of communication was text based. I'd feel confident to say they spoke more than they wrote.

The article says the issue is to do with the exchange of written words alone, which do not transmit certain nuances of tone of voice and reading nonverbal cues. Logic seems pretty sound to me - if you spend more time in text based covnersation, that it what you will become accustomed to, yeah?

How it has affected me, is that it all comes in bite sized meals, and so I've become accustommed to things short, entertaining and punchy. If it doesn't grab me straight away, I'm lost. Typical MTV Generation. I struggle to read a non-fiction book for more than 30 minutes, my mind wanders. My mind is used to the bite sized meals.

Are you not convinced about that?

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