Talking Versus Texting

How technology is affecting personal communication

Hannah Stevens, Assistant Website Copy Editor

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Imagine this scenario; a long day at school and work is finally coming to an end; dinner is ready and smells delicious; the family is sitting around the dinner table; everyone is staring down at their cell phones and texting. In recent years, texting between family members within the house has become a familiar and common form of communication.

In an interview with USA Today, Pittsburgh psychologist Dr. Nancy Mramor said using technology is sometimes an avoidance technique. Lancaster High School sophomore Tommy Crum agrees and says that texting his mother while they are both at home helps him avoid conversation.

Tommy Crum says texting helps him avoid conversations with his mother.

“My mom and I don’t really communicate face to face at home,” he said.

“My mom will text me when she wants me to do something for her but I can easily delete the text and say I didn’t get it,” said Crum.

While that may not work for everyone, texting with a household instead of yelling may result in a more peaceful environment. According to USA Today who encouraged parents around the country to comment on texting under the same roof, most parents said they preferred texting their teenagers as opposed to yelling in the house.

“This is 2019. We use technology rather than yelling through the house,” says Michigan nurse Wendy Anton, who not only texts with the family at home but communicates with them via Amazon Alexa. And Anton says, “the adults will also text each other for the same reasons or even if we want to say things we don’t want the kids to hear.”

Raven Johnson says texting allows her to communicate more with people when she feels shy or quiet.

LHS sophomore Mercedes Nance says she agrees. In fact, she says she often gets emergency texts from family members in the room next door who need help and can’t help themselves.

“Sometimes if my sister is stuck in the bathroom and needs toilet paper, she will text me instead of yelling for me,” she said.

Emergencies aside, some students feel that texting someone even in close proximity actually increases communication.

Raven Johnson, an LHS sophomore describes herself as shy and likes that she can have a conversation with someone sitting next to her without actually speaking.

“It (texting) affects the way I communicate because it limits how much I have to talk out loud,” she said.
“I am really shy and I prefer to talk to people by texting.”

Unlike Johnson who likes to text rather than verbalize, Gabby Steelman said she feels left out when those around her are texting on their phones instead of having a conversation.

“It easy to stare at screens instead of interacting with those around them,” she said.