Heads down. Thumbs racing. Faces illuminated by the LCD screen glowing below.
Texting. The new standard in communication. Taking the generation(s) by storm.
Communication in today's world has changed so much from when I was in Junior High and even into High School. That's not a comment that is intended to make me seem old or even out of touch with communication. However, I have recently become much more aware of the place that technology holds in my life and the place that I see it taking in many of my students.
I began using a cell phone with texting enabled on it in my Junior year of High School, 2002-2003. My parents purchased the unlimited package after I ran their bill up to $250.00 on some 4,000 texts or something. Not a good day for me, if you know what I mean. However, for students like my brother, who started texting earlier in his life than I did, texting is in the fabric of their lives. It has become a very obvious replacement for the telephone call and has become the primary form of communication for many teens AND good chunk of adults.
I think that there are some real reasons why this is and why I decided to continue to use it after all these years (that comment does make me sound old). I'll try to offer these with as much objectivity as possible.
1. It is less invasive.
Phone calls can seem intrusive and demand an immediate dropping of whatever the person is doing. You don't really have to bother the person and they can answer you whenever they want. If they want to respond right away they can. It might even be faster because they could probably just text you right back real quick.
2. It is so much quicker.
All a person has to do is send a quick text and then send a quick text back. It is pretty much the fastest way to transfer information and you don't even have to engage in the small talk and needless pauses. We can make plans quicker and see where people want to go faster than ever before.
3. It is easier.
Things can be dealt with easier when they are done through text. Conflict, plans, cancelling of plans and all kinds of discussions can be done, AND, I can engage in a discussion with my friends in the room that I am in. It is so much easier to use and multi-task.
There is some irony in some of those reasons, however, I think that these are three pretty well accepted reasons for texting use. What do you think? I have my thoughts, but what are yours?