If you know me personally, you know how I feel about chat, IM's, text messages etc. It's fine to share small bits of information quickly but I believe if that is your primary or only means of communication, you're hiding from something, using that as a crutch. You tell yourself, oh I talked to her yesterday, or he said this to me... Really? Did you really talk? Did all those lol's when you didn't even crack a smile or were rolling your eyes get your point across? How many times have you had a "fight" over text cause someone mistook what you "said"?
When IM was a novelty, I was AIM and Yahoo messenger. Then I realized I was spending a lot more time on the computer than on the phone listening to the inflections of your voice. I was typing about how I want to go here and there and not going here and there. Or when I was out I'd be too busy sending text messages that I missed something. Nowadays, just because text and IM are mobile now, and I can take you with me, doesn't mean I want to and doesn't mean I will. And this Twitter shit? Unbelievable. Abigail's taking a 12-inch shit right now. Abigail is working out (I'm working out and able to share this with you?). Abigail just saw this fine brother on the train. We've been watching each other the whole time - so I post a tweet instead of talking to him. I'm sure someday, the technology will be developed that we'll be able to send messages to people we don't know yet, that'll be how we introduce ourselves in the future. I'll get digitally-engaged and have an e-wedding.
But the reason why I started this entry was because of the earthquake in Italy. If it weren't for non-vocal instant communication, I wouldn't have found out about my friend in Italy. In my panic and fever haze I couldn't remember what region of Italy he lived in. With sleep in my eye and snot in my nose I sent a message to him via Windows Messenger on my phone. The pitter-patter of my heart stilled when he wrote back that he was ok. While under my covers, I was able to express my concern, be reminded of his home region in Italy (he's north of Abruzzo), and send virtual hugs and kisses. Another friend who lives in Lazio (between L'Aquila and Rome) responded to my inquiry almost immediately as well. He described how his bedroom walls shook that night but there wasn't much damage or wounded people in his city. There are people (compatriots as he put it) in a neighboring town of Sora that are still missing under the rubble. For that reason, I will accept communication via technology.