Cumberland Times-News

Editorials

March 3, 2013

It’s frustrating

Why don’t they answer our texts or voicemails?

Most of us know how it feels to be neglected, forgotten or ignored, but now it’s coming from a direction few would have imagined at one time.

A new study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project reports that 39 percent of cell phone owners say they receive complaints that they don’t answer their cell phone calls or text messages promptly, and another third have been told they don’t check their phones often enough.

This is not surprising, when you consider that ours is a society that has grown accustomed to instant gratification.

A recent Associated Press story about the study quoted a woman who said she’s heard a former boyfriend boast about not reading his text messages — which we think might be one factor that contributed to his being an ex-boyfriend.

When you add email to an equation that already includes text-messages and voicemails, the rejection quotient probably gets even higher.

AP said the problem sometimes lies with technological glitches, the sheer quantity of messages people receive or operator error.

When we give our email address to people over the old-fashioned telephone, we often include an admonition to type in the right address.

To email us a letter to the editor, for instance, send it to letters@times-news.com.

If you send it to letters@timesnews.com, it will go to the Erie, Pa., Times-News. We occasionally get letters meant for that paper, and it sometimes receive letters that are meant for ours.

If you send it to letters@times—news.com, nobody will get it ... at least nobody we know of.

There’s no doubt that email, text-messaging, voicemail and the like have led to great advances in what some call The Information Age.

However, one phenomenon associated with it is somewhat disturbing, at least to those of us who are old-fashioned and traditional when it comes to communication.

Younger people, especially, seem growingly reluctant to talk to each other face-to-face.

We still enjoy doing that sort of thing.

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