Dearly beloved. We are gathered here today to mourn the loss of conventional communication; because somebody frankly needs to bury it.

Yes, the days have come and gone where you’d simply yell down the street to catch the attention of a friend, use paper cups and string as phones, or walk over to a someone’s place unannounced to have a chat and see how their day went. We, through insanely progressive technology in combination with a plethora of recently added rules to the constructs of society and communication, are evolving (I guess you could say) into an age of “synthetic communication” – a term loved by many, and hated by more.

The expression “adapt or die” seems to be one people can’t quite cram down each-other’s throats quick enough in our so-called modern society, yet, when it comes to keeping in touch, everybody wants to kick it old school, which doesn’t really make much sense. We’ve come from a time where hand-written letters and weekly coffee meetings were practical, to this hyper-driven technologically fueled state of existence that sort of feels like being trapped in a cage, anchored to a hamster wheel and pumped full of anxiety. The problem with this, is that nobody’s waking up and asking WHY instead of just blaming technology, Osama, communists, or whatever else they can think of. This isn’t time for the blame game, sorry guys.

Whoever decided to wake up one day and point the finger at technology for “never seeing your friends face to face anymore” is an idiot. See, the one thing people tend to never realize is that the way we now communicate isn’t something any of us choose, but is instead what society chooses. So, I guess if you wanted to blame anyone, you can blame society…sort of? I’ll give you a second to let your head explode.

Let’s continue.

Yeah, that’s right. I said it. People communicate via this crusade-resembling onslaught of emails, text messages, and voicemails, not because they’ve stopped caring, but because they’ve been practically forced to. Technology has progressed as a result of society progressing. It’s a means to an end, not the other way around.

Let’s look at this objectively:
Why were cars originally invented? Because people needed to get from point A to B faster. Why were telephones invented? Because writing a letter by hand and sending it in the mail or by carrier pigeon to ask somebody out for coffee is a pain in the ass. Why were cell phones invented? So that people can stay in touch wherever they are. Computers? People got sick of typewriters. E-mail? No stamps. E-readers? Paper waste. iPods? Vinyl’s too heavy to go dog-walking with…starting to see the trend here?

Getting back to the original point of this argument, yes, communication has effectively become more “synthetic”, not because people stopped caring, but because society doesn’t permit us time to properly stay in touch. We live in a fast-paced world where we travel in airplanes, drive to work in cars, and keep in touch with text messaging and e-mails. It’s nothing personal, it’s just an adapt or die thing that the rest of you will hopefully figure out sooner or later. Just because somebody texted you “I love you” doesn’t mean they don’t mean it. That’d be like proposing to somebody then punching them in the face after. If people say something to you (unless of course they’re lying) it doesn’t matter if they do it by e-mail or by text message. They’re probably trying to communicate with a  multitude of other people at the same time, courtesy of society’s high-strung pace and insane communicative requirements.

If this whole “never speaking face to face” thing is seriously so much of an issue for you, then hey, guess what, technology’s found a solution to this big mystery as well. One word…wait for it…Skype. Yes indeed, webcam conferencing is a very easy way to literally speak face to face with somebody while swimming through the multi-faceted spectrum of your technology-fueled existence.

We really are sorry we’ve had to say goodbye to the glory days of face to face interactions and cute sit-down conversations, but the world doesn’t have time for it. We literally aren’t given that time anymore. In one given day, nearly everybody who’s had the privilege of reading this, will have a whole mound of crap they need to get through by the end of the week. Everybody’s busy, and they’re busy all the time, and the worst part about it all is there’s no way to escape it. So, what do we do? We adapt or die. Not in the literal sense of the word, that’d be cruel; but socially, oh yes, indeed there’s a terrible death to be had should you not keep up with communication methods. Sending somebody an e-mail or a text message is the exact same thing as sending them a letter, but it’s faster, and isn’t responsible for the genocide of millions of trees.

Get with the program, or pick a different show, because face to face quality hangout time is becoming extinct and there’s not really any chance for us to go back on that now. We’ve all evolved with the times…you should too.

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photos courtesy of Matt Romack Photography and  Jhaymesisviphotography