January 30, 2010

E-mail as a form of communication

A couple of weeks ago, one of the gals in our Sunday school class took off down a bunny-trail about how e-mail is a horrible way of communicating with people. The irony was that several people in the room were quite comfortable with email as a means of communication and a few even preferred it.

I'm still working my way through Adam McHugh's book, Introverts in the Church, and I just came across some quotes by him that summarize quite nicely, in my opinion, the strengths of email -- especially for the introvert who may prefer this medium to phone communication.

"E-mail, in particular, allows us to think before we communicate, to correspond at our own pace and to change what we say before we send it.  E-mail doesn't make the immediate social demands that cell phones do, and it enables us to communicate without interruption.  In addition, there is a degree of distance in communication via e-mail, and this distance frees us to be more vulnerable than we might normally be."

I already knew all that.  But sometimes it's nice to hear someone else say it.