Umass Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research Blog

Technology Overload?

Happy Monday everyone! We hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving weekends! Today we come to you with a question, “How much is too much technology?”

As we know, technology is forever changing. New innovative gadgets are being thought of and created daily, whereas existing ones are just getting smaller, but what does that mean for everything else? Communication is a key topic when the issue of technology resonates.

How many of you leave your phones at home and feel lost or disconnected to everyone? Technology is changing the way we communicate with one another and shaping how we present ourselves to our peers. As technology continues to advance, we move away from the traditional phone call and face-to-face interaction, to texting, online emailing, and Facebook updating. Not to say this is a bad thing, but how much is too much?

We must continue to change the way we communicate since our technology continues to change as well, but it sometimes makes us miss the old ways. How annoying is it when you call a company or call center and all you can do is talk to an answering service? Don’t you just wish you could talk to a real person!?

An article from the New York Times explains a new book titled “Alone Together” by Sherry Turkle. Turkle uses her book to explain why we are relying more on technology over one another. Technology, she writes, “makes it easy to communicate when we wish to disengage at will.” Kids today seem to rely more on technology than older generations. Adolescents she interviewed explained talking on the phone as, “almost always too prying, it takes too long, and it is impossible to say ‘good-bye.’” She goes on to state, young people “prefer to deal with strong feelings from the safe haven of the Net. It gives them an alternative to processing emotions in real time.” Texting in a way allows people to think before they say something and not show how they are really feeling.

Personally, I feel an individual can have meaningful relationships with others in relation to our technological advances, but it depends on the individual. As Turkle found, adolescents seem to rely on technology more and it reflects onto how they communicate with others. This can be an issue especially in situations where they must interact with others using the ‘old’ communication methods, but again, it depends on the person.

What do you think .. do you think technology is stunting how people communicate with others, or does it benefit our communication with others? Let us know what you think, we’d love to hear from you! Until next week everyone!

For a complete look at the New York Times article, click on the link below:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/22/books/22book.html?_r

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