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Fast Forward Communication

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  • n.ramjee@ceeindia.org
    Dear Friends, With the increasing number of people - both young and old-turning to emails and SMSs to get their message across I have recently been wondering
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 3, 2006
      Dear Friends,

      With the increasing number of people – both young and old-turning to emails and SMSs to get their message across I have recently been wondering about the gradual death of the art of writing in the long hand. I am enclosing my views on this Fast Forward Communication in the enclosure. I think the day is not far when SMS novels will be the norm. So practice away all you Sidney Sheldons, Dan Browns, JK Rowlings and our more recent, Chetan Bhagats.

      Hope a few of you agree with me.

      ramjee


      Traveling in the local train I happened to glance at the cell phone screen of a young first year college boy who was standing nose to nose with me in the crowded compartment. My attention was riveted, as I could make head nor tail of the communication he was energetically texting. I shamelessly read

      Ths msg is FYEO. I h8 it wn u r not in coleg. AFAIK I hv nvr flt ths abt NE1.I shl b GTSY. I CUIMD evrydy bt  WUWH. H2CUS n b on Cld9. BB4N. – MUQT :-)

      Curiosity and etiquette warred. Curiosity won. I asked her to decipher the message for  me.
      ‘I am sending a message to my boyfriend’ she informed me happily and went on to translate it:
       
      This message is for your eyes only. I hate it when you are not in college. As far as I know, I have never felt this about anyone. I shall be glad to see you. I see you in my dreams everyday but  wish you were here. Hope to see you soon and be on cloud nine. Bye bye for now - Missing you Cutie. Smiley
      I admit I felt helplessly ignorant, gauche and ancient. And I realized that I was out of sync with today’s world. The young students who affectionately called me uncle were right!
      I have been proudly using the mobile phone for years now and have been sending regular messages to my friends who are also as contemporary as I am. Or so I thought. I could now identify with the term ‘generation gap’ – the problem was that this time I was the wrong generation. I recollected a recently read article about schools and universities contemplating permitting the SMS lingo to students writing their examinations.
      We have instances of young ones today yakking away for hours on end on the telephone. The conversations range from the mundane to the esoteric. I know students who do their homework over the telephone.
      Then there’s the email which has a language of it’s own. Emails flow back and forth debating over a point in staccato, cryptic language. Crisp and to the point.
      Not that I have anything against the above forms of communication. I use them all and personally vouch for their merits. But I cannot resist wistfully yearning for a handwritten letter these days.
      Take a moment to try and remember the last time you received a letter from a family member or friend? Not a greeting card, not an email, not a text message and certainly not a telephone call. A real, live, hand written letter, which one posts after writing it on paper?
      Astonished? Astounded? Dumbfounded?
      Because you have just realized that it has been at least a couple of years since you have received a letter from a dear one.
      Wheen my father fell seriously ill recently, I received several encouraging words from friends and relatives over the phone, email and SMS. But the one message, which touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes, was a beautifully penned letter from an old uncle who lives next door. father. The personalized words conveyed his caring and depth of feelings. I have preserved that letter as a treasured possession.
      We may argue that in these times it is important to get the message across and the medium is not important. I disagree. I even pity the young generation who has not experienced the romance and thrill of writing and receiving a letter. The only letter writing they seem to have done is in the Language examination. Dare I say that in metro cities some would have seen the postman only in the movies? Traditional handwritten greeting cards have been replaced by the more impersonal e-cards.
      Letter writing - a dying art- is in my opinion an exquisite skill. It signifies that the person considers you important enough to take personal time to pen in meaningful words and then post it to you. Unlike an SMS or email, which you send after snatching a few seconds from your busy schedule to punch in a couple of words, letter writing is more deliberate and personal. You can savor the written words and the feelings behind them even years after they were written and relive the moment all over again.
      There are numerous instances of letters written by famous personalities of the yesteryears being auctioned today for their intrinsic worth. Can you imagine, after a few years, the auctioning of SMS and email messages? Imagine a situation where the enigmatic, moody and aristocratic Mr. Romeo professes his love to the snooty Juliet on SMS!
      Times are changing and maybe I am quibbling over a non-issue. Perhaps the first person who send smoke signals for getting his message across was similarly distressed when others started writing letters!

      NEthg 2+?     (‘Anything to add?’)
    • Madhavi Daruwalla
      Dear Mr. Ramjee, I absolutely agree with you. I remember writing to my penfriends all over the world, the thrill was in the posting of letter as well as
      Message 2 of 2 , Feb 4, 2006
        Dear Mr. Ramjee,
        I absolutely agree with you. I remember writing to my penfriends all over the world, the thrill was in the posting of letter as well as eagerly awaiting it's reply. But I guess times are a changing and now have netpals with instant gratification. Ah! well as a 10 year old I would have traded anything for something like a messenger, now at my age the waiting seems romantic, our perception changes too with age.
         
        But I agree, I still get a thrill receiving a letter from old friends though now all I get in the post are bills!!!!!
        M&M
        n.ramjee@... wrote:
        Dear Friends,

        With the increasing number of people – both young and old-turning to emails and SMSs to get their message across I have recently been wondering about the gradual death of the art of writing in the long hand. I am enclosing my views on this Fast Forward Communication in the enclosure. I think the day is not far when SMS novels will be the norm. So practice away all you Sidney Sheldons, Dan Browns, JK Rowlings and our more recent, Chetan Bhagats.

        Hope a few of you agree with me.

        ramjee


        Traveling in the local train I happened to glance at the cell phone screen of a young first year college boy who was standing nose to nose with me in the crowded compartment. My attention was riveted, as I could make head nor tail of the communication he was energetically texting. I shamelessly read

        Ths msg is FYEO. I h8 it wn u r not in coleg. AFAIK I hv nvr flt ths abt NE1.I shl b GTSY. I CUIMD evrydy bt  WUWH. H2CUS n b on Cld9. BB4N. – MUQT :-)

        Curiosity and etiquette warred. Curiosity won. I asked her to decipher the message for  me.
        ‘I am sending a message to my boyfriend’ she informed me happily and went on to translate it:
         
        This message is for your eyes only. I hate it when you are not in college. As far as I know, I have never felt this about anyone. I shall be glad to see you. I see you in my dreams everyday but  wish you were here. Hope to see you soon and be on cloud nine. Bye bye for now - Missing you Cutie. Smiley
        I admit I felt helplessly ignorant, gauche and ancient. And I realized that I was out of sync with today’s world. The young students who affectionately called me uncle were right!
        I have been proudly using the mobile phone for years now and have been sending regular messages to my friends who are also as contemporary as I am. Or so I thought. I could now identify with the term ‘generation gap’ – the problem was that this time I was the wrong generation. I recollected a recently read article about schools and universities contemplating permitting the SMS lingo to students writing their examinations.
        We have instances of young ones today yakking away for hours on end on the telephone. The conversations range from the mundane to the esoteric. I know students who do their homework over the telephone.
        Then there’s the email which has a language of it’s own. Emails flow back and forth debating over a point in staccato, cryptic language. Crisp and to the point.
        Not that I have anything against the above forms of communication. I use them all and personally vouch for their merits. But I cannot resist wistfully yearning for a handwritten letter these days.
        Take a moment to try and remember the last time you received a letter from a family member or friend? Not a greeting card, not an email, not a text message and certainly not a telephone call. A real, live, hand written letter, which one posts after writing it on paper?
        Astonished? Astounded? Dumbfounded?
        Because you have just realized that it has been at least a couple of years since you have received a letter from a dear one.
        Wheen my father fell seriously ill recently, I received several encouraging words from friends and relatives over the phone, email and SMS. But the one message, which touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes, was a beautifully penned letter from an old uncle who lives next door. father. The personalized words conveyed his caring and depth of feelings. I have preserved that letter as a treasured possession.
        We may argue that in these times it is important to get the message across and the medium is not important. I disagree. I even pity the young generation who has not experienced the romance and thrill of writing and receiving a letter. The only letter writing they seem to have done is in the Language examination. Dare I say that in metro cities some would have seen the postman only in the movies? Traditional handwritten greeting cards have been replaced by the more impersonal e-cards.
        Letter writing - a dying art- is in my opinion an exquisite skill. It signifies that the person considers you important enough to take personal time to pen in meaningful words and then post it to you. Unlike an SMS or email, which you send after snatching a few seconds from your busy schedule to punch in a couple of words, letter writing is more deliberate and personal. You can savor the written words and the feelings behind them even years after they were written and relive the moment all over again.
        There are numerous instances of letters written by famous personalities of the yesteryears being auctioned today for their intrinsic worth. Can you imagine, after a few years, the auctioning of SMS and email messages? Imagine a situation where the enigmatic, moody and aristocratic Mr. Romeo professes his love to the snooty Juliet on SMS!
        Times are changing and maybe I am quibbling over a non-issue. Perhaps the first person who send smoke signals for getting his message across was similarly distressed when others started writing letters!

        NEthg 2+?     (‘Anything to add?’)


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