Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Conclusions and Reflection

When undertaking this project I hypothesized that people are beginning to let go of their social skills because of the new texting phenomenon.  By exploring this topic through survey and research, I would say I disproved my hypothesis.  This study reveals that some people do choose texting over face to face communication; however in some situations most participants realized that face to face is very crucial in some instances. For example, when telling someone bad news, most respondents answered that they would prefer to wait and tell someone in person rather than through text or phone call because they want to be there to console the person.  From this, we can see that face to face interaction has not died out.  There are some instances where it is crucial.

In my annotated bibliography, I was surprised to see that such a great amount of research has been done on the topic of social skills diminishing due to texting.  My study confirms these findings in the literature.   By contrast to these authors, I found in one of the articles, that the lack of having a cellphone and being able to text has caused some kids to be excluded from their group of friends.  Charlton argues that the lack of a cellphone in 10 and 11 year olds has become detrimental to their social lives.  I thought this was really interesting because it argues for the complete opposite of the rest of my research.  Where as the norm way of thinking says that people are losing their social skills due to cellphones and texting, this research concludes that the cellphone is what creates the social aspect of these 10 and 11 year olds' lives.  It says a lot about how social media makes up a big part of our lives, especially at such a young age, in this case.

In conducting this research, I examined the role cellphone usage and text messaging in my own life.  I do agree with most of the survey participants when they say that face to face communication is ideal in conveying bad news and/or good news.  In some instances though for example, when asking a simple question, or for a favor, text messaging is quicker and more convenient, even more so when you are in a setting where you can't exactly have a full fledged conversation.

 Texting is becoming increasingly popular because of it's convenience and speed, especially in situations when you just want to ask a quick question or favor.  However, the majority of respondents said they would rather speak to someone face to face when conveying bad news and good news. From this, I learned that social skills are not completely fading directly due to text messaging, rather people now have options as to how they communicate with others.

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