GRE Issue Essay 223
“High-speed electronic communications media, such as electronic mail and television, tend to prevent meaningful and thoughtful communication.”
Media is a powerful source of information and communication. Among the various modes of communication, high speed electronic mails and television are the most popular ones. They have brought a sudden boom in the field of communication. In spite of some drawbacks attached to these high speed electronic media, these cannot be done away with, because of their numerous merits.
First, the speed of conveying a message has increased manifold when compared to the print media. This has increased the speed of exchange of information, which results in saving of precious time. For example, any message or declaration by politicians is directly conveyed to the public in no time. In turn, the reaction to their policies and messages is sent with equal ease and speed. It has also become quite convenient to collect an opinion poll among the public over a certain issue on selection of favorite politician, sportsman, or entertainer. The general surveys to be conducted for various study purposes have benefitted from fast and well connecting media like electronic mails and television.
Second, these high speed media have added to the information received from all parts of the world. There is a better connectivity of the nations among themselves because of awareness of various happenings related to politics, economics, inventions, entertainment and even terrorism. Along with the consciousness about latest developments, security alerts are also sensitized by these news channels. Such exchange of information plays a significant role in taking up joint measures against terrorist attacks as well other mishaps.
Third, in the busy world today where it has become difficult to meet the near and dear ones regularly in person, electronic mails keep people in touch. The latest news through television keeps one aware of the happenings and well being of relatives in far off places. Moreover, intelligent and meaningful panel discussion or talk shows relayed on television not only add to freedom of expression but also give a better insight of various topics and problems at hand.
Fourth, these media are definitely catering to the needs of fast paced world, as one can share a piece of information simultaneously by many others through electronic mails, with an added advantage of quick feedback. This has further led to other facilities like online working for business or even availing public services like ticket booking, banking etc.
However, like any other technological advancement there are a few drawbacks attached to these high speed communication media. The television does not give news with an option of choosing or ignoring the details, unless one changes the channel itself. The usually repetitive and useless news like reporting day to day activities of celebrities etc is again due to growing competition of media to serve non stop. Similarly, unlike letters and phone conversation, electronic mails are generally quite impersonal. Though, the lack of thoughtful communication here is to be blamed on the users who have become ultra busy in their work schedules and not to these modes of communication.
Thus, in the wake of the above discussion, it would be incorrect to say that high speed communication media prevents meaningful communication.