I can’t talk, only WhatsApp: Are we losing the ability to talk?

Young people use apps like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp or Instagram on a daily basis. In the Anglo-Saxon world, they are already called the silent generation, which is distinguished by their preference for instant messaging over traditional telephone calls. However, this trend is not only popular among teenagers. Adults have also turned to sending messages or audios to call family and friends, rather than making a call. Given this fact, it seems clear that our habits have changed. But can we continue to talk about the real conversations? Do you lose or lose the ability to speak? Why are their phones silenced forever?

“The use of mobile phones and screens has been of great importance to civilization, mainly due to the development of communications. Today, this technological revolution has no turning back. In view of this, it will be necessary to identify the advantages, enhance them, and the disadvantages, to reduce them”, says the psychologist Graciella Chamotte.

Among the advantages of a cell phone, the specialist mentions that it facilitates remote communication, allows quick access to information on the Web, promotes communication and maintenance of virtual links, expands social networks and democratizes information. “It really is a great advantage,” he says. However, it immediately focuses on the negative points and suggests that it is worth reflecting on the way the digital age is changing the way we communicate. He describes: “We can say that language on a cell phone is characterized by acronyms, immediacy, that it is a far cry from handwritten text, and that feelings and emotions are expressed, in many cases, by symbols and images.”

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With this panorama as a starting point, Chamotte talks about the impoverishment of communication. “If dialogue is constantly generated through messaging systems, such as WhatsApp, we end up ignoring the spelling rules and incurring some correction when writing. Ultimately, literate language is undermined,” he says. According to his view, the excessive use of vulgar vernacular, common in hadiths, also leads us to this linguistic poverty and deviation from language.

The miracle of dialogue. Traditional conversation has important characteristics of socialization, which are missed. a file

Chamut then cites some research that reveals that young college students handle half of the words they were in use about 30 years ago. “Obviously, this also manifests itself in the complete absence of reading and the deterioration of culture. It is difficult for boys to speak accurately and express what they want,” he notes. In turn, this language disability prompts them to take action when words are missing. In psychology – continues the specialist – it is understood that words allow us not to move towards aggressions.

Finally, it refers to other concerns about excessive use of cell phones or screens, such as decreased short-term memory, insomnia, difficulty seeing, dependence, reduced real relationships, brain disorders (which is why it is forbidden for children under two years of age) and impoverishment of the ability to Attention. Not to mention it complicates relationships in the family! Faced with this narrative, the expert concludes that the absolute need for real, visual, auditory, and physical contact with people takes precedence. He concludes, “There is a lot of talk about the importance of hugs for mental health. Today, many people are on networks and sharing moments. But deep down, they have a great sense of loneliness.”

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Also a psychologist Cecilia Juarez Think about how apps, particularly WhatsApp, affect the way we speak. “My teen patients tell me that a text or voice message is instant, quick and doesn’t bother the other because he’s reading or listening when he can. Basically, they don’t think of another way to communicate,” he says. In the words of young people on their couch, this form of conversation offers a great deal of freedom and requires very little commitment. WhatsApp allows us to organize the times as we wish.

The truth is that in the digital age, our ability to connect seems to have no limits. However, it must be remembered that for the conversation to be successful, two attentive and mutually available interlocutors are needed, and this is what makes the specialist stand out. And the exact opposite happens with devices: our attention seems to be more distracted than ever.

– Do we lose the ability to speak?

– We are experiencing connection speeds we have never seen before. Everything changes. Real dialogue and loving interaction are neglected. We do not take time to contact each other. The other one doesn’t even take the time to listen to us, even for a few minutes. Today, one emoji indicates how we feel. The magic of talking has been lost.

Juárez, like his colleague, states that children and adolescents cannot imagine a day without a phone, and laments the coldness of written text or incorporating voice messages as the only method of interaction. However, it saves us in the worst moments of the pandemic, that these tools have saved us. “We were able to enter other people’s homes without leaving our own. We were able to enter, educate, heal, listen and pamper…” Ends.

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Lovell Loxley

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