A lot has been said about digitization and its negative impact on the world Communication scolded, but we also had to realize how systemically important it is. time, about our handling of the Technology think.

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Asynchronous communication saves time

Especially because of the latest developments, we are communicating increasingly asynchronously: either not at the same time or because our conversation partner is not in the same place as we are.

This is practical and saves time - on the one hand. But this selective perception makes our exchange poorer, experts say. We miss important experiences because we no longer leave an encounter to chance.

Digitization: it promotes the brutalization of customs

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The Internet changes our communication behavior radically and perhaps not always to our advantage. The question that people like to argue about is: Is technology to blame for the problem – or is it us users?

I recently went to Best of HR - Berufebilder.de® delivered an exchange of blows on a topic that is often discussed in internet circles: namely the question of whether the internet is to blame for the brutalization of communication habits - or the user himself.

Communication: everything was better in the past

Well, at first it was about the more fundamental question: Has communication changed at all, are the customs brutalized and was everything better in the past - or not?

For example, the happy and extensively discussed topic of whether everything was really better in the past: Perhaps the smartphone is actually just the aid that prevents you from staring at yourself in public transport and accidentally fixing certain body parts of fellow human beings inadvertently?

Is the lack of self-discipline to blame?

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Nevertheless, there are always aspects in this discussion that make me think - precisely because I used to do exactly the same thing Opinions was and meanwhile see a few things differently.

Is our misdirected communication really a problem of technology or rather a lack of self-discipline and Respect towards its surroundings? Because even if the new technology makes permanent availability possible, it doesn't force you to do it, does it?

Do we allow ourselves to be enslaved by the cell phone in our pockets?

It is certainly not the technology that compels us to treat our people with disrespect, and it is certainly our own fault if we constantly have to stare at the cell phone in the restaurant.

Accordingly, I consider experiments such as "Half a year without the Internet" to be complete nonsense. And yet: that now that we can do it, we don't just switch off the cell phone in our pockets, but also after the end of the day from bosses and eMailLet s enslave for another reason:

Self-discipline asked: Our brain cannot leave things behind

Our Brain is simply not made for leaving things alone. On the contrary, it really ensures that we constantly have everything in the Head remember what we still have to do, what we have planned or what we should still respond to. And so makes us, for example, the unanswered eMail the boss constantly nervous and restless.

To dismiss this as a lack of self-discipline falls short and not only ignores the reality of human behavior, but also stamps those who cannot discipline themselves as failures.

Adaptation to modern communication is the next leap in evolution

Of course we can and should learn how to use modern communication channels. especially if you look at discussions on the Internet today, especially in social media, in which every emotion is left out - and that can be positive as negative Be - you can see very clearly that this is for many People there is still a long way to go.

However, I now believe that this learning step can be achieved more slowly than we imagine or wish today and will vary greatly depending on the level of education and previous knowledge of the respective person. For me, this adaptation of people to modern communication is therefore the next evolutionary leap - and it cannot be achieved overnight.

Medi Richness Theory: Which form of communication is worth more?

Which form of communication is more “worth” - that on the Internet or that of two people sitting across from each other? I am whole clear for the last one. Up until now that was just a vague feeling, but thanks to a reader's comment I can now explain it with a scientific term:

Media Richness Theory – too German “Media Richness Theory”. The more complex the situation, the more media should be used to transmit all content. The time difference between the two forms of communication should be as small as possible.

The problem with video conferencing: important content is missing

This is exactly the problem with modern communication media: our communication partners simply grasp content better, faster and more correctly when they are standing directly in front of you - if only because you can get an immediate impression based on gestures and facial expressions Feedback receives and can submit missing information accordingly.

The more delayed the communication, the more difficult it is to get information across correctly. This also applies to video conferences, which are often seen as a panacea for long-distance communication.

Small signals decide the communication

Just think how difficult it is to perceive smaller signals such as frowning or clearing of the throat, even during video transmissions. But then a very important part of the communication is missing.

And it seems improper for many people to talk in between to make themselves heard. Conversely, speakers must also speak clearly. Therefore, in my opinion, video conferences are not comparable to normal conferences.

The problem with internet addiction

Internet addiction, the pathological inability to stop clicking, is also a hot topic in Germany. Mechthild Dyckmans, the federal government's drug commissioner, wants this Behavior even classified as a disease. A study showed that 0,7 percent of all 25 to 64 year olds in Germany no longer come from Online- Gaming or Social networks going on and neglecting their social life.

The study results are not undisputed. Critics see Internet addiction as just another form of depression in which pre-existing social Problems manifest. But all in all, one should ask oneself the question: Power Internet lonely?

Increase in asynchronous communication

The sociologist Simon Edwin Dittrich has committed himself to an anthology for the Heinrich Böll Foundation on the subject of #public_life - digital intimacy, the Privacy and the network is extensively concerned with how the changed communication behavior affects the individual and the Society affects.

According to his observation, modern technologies lead above all to an increase in asynchronous communication. This means conversations in which the conversation partners either do not act at the same time or do not act in the same place. As an example, Dittrich mentions writing text messages while eating. On page 100 of the # public_life volume, he says:

“When I was a child, it would have been unthinkable to get up from the dinner table to answer the phone. When I eat with friends today, it happens more often that several of us look at their phone, eMailCheck s, write SMS, tweet or on Facebook to write. Of course there is always a hail of rain Criticism by people who find it impolite not to give them their full awareness dedicated. But the vehemence is decreasing.”

Narrowed perception and tunnel vision

For Dittrich, this is not just a one-off phenomenon, but has an impact on our society: for example, many travelers on trains no longer talk to each other, but to other people who are far away via cell phone or laptop. So instead of communicating with the direct environment, one increasingly only speaks selectively with people who one has chosen oneself. But that makes the perception more selective and the exchange poorer: A lot of information that you can find in one Conversation would get by chance among travelers - the serendipity - fall by the wayside.

Put figuratively: The tunnel view of mobile communication can prevent your own horizons from expanding. For Dittrich, this creates a public space in which, paradoxically, above all, private actions are carried out - for example, when people are arguing on the bus using a mobile phone and everyone is aware of the dispute. Exactly from these gaps it is difficult to get out afterwards, as Dittrich states, because they are not really private:

Image change in the network?

“With the traces we leave behind in the public spaces, it will be more difficult to completely change an environment. In any case, it is not as 'easy' as moving from Klein-Gummersbach to Hamburg, because our online profiles remain unchanged. ”

An experience, which also made Vivian pain. She was a community manager at Xing and was also perceived as such on the internet. She had contributed to this with her numerous activities in and around the network. But then she moved to the logistics company Hermes as a social media manager. The problem: Many of their online contacts did not even notice the job change - and still speak to them as Xing employees.

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