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Has written communication coupled w/technology {email, texting} caused a decline in verbal skills? Is the art of conversation endangered?

When was the last time you engaged in a lively, first person, conversation? Do you miss the give and take of impromptu conversation - or perhaps, have you come to prefer texting over talking? What does this say about our ability to think on our feet, engage one another on a purely human - no digital surrogates in place - level? Do the devices we use to communicate replicate accurately our voice, or is meaning and tone somewhat sacrificed to convenience?

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  • Jan 31 2012: I feel that written communication combined with technology has damaged language beyond just conversationally. When I was in high school I had a discussion with my English Lit. teacher about some of the essays she was marking from an English 12 honours class. The grammer and spelling in many was pretty horrific, and some people even ventured to use text acronyms in them. She told me that students over the years were having a hard time understanding text books that she'd been using for the last ten years. When I think about that, the texts aren't changing and getting more difficult, it's that the level of education people are receiving is degrading.

    Another example I feel fits here is that my six year old nephew got a laptop for Christmas. When his mother was asked why she bought him this piece of technology she said it was because a teacher had complained about his writing skills, and she said he would now learn how to type his homework so that he would be able to avoid working on his penmanhip. This blew my mind.

    I think that many people also use techonology such as facebook and twitter as a replacement for socializing. Which to me is a bad thing, we're encouraging people to become more and more isolated from eachother, whilst creating the illusion that they aren't actually isolated at all.

    I think that technology all around is harming communication, and language.

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