Challenges for New Ways Of Communication

There is a big differences between nowadays and before in the communication world. Communication has existed in various forms since man appeared on Earth. The methods, however, consisted of a disorganized set of signs that could have different meanings to each human using them. Starting from primitive communication is cave paintings that appeared around 130,000 B.C.E, the homo sapiens, then Early Handwritten Documents/Books. Those with the proper education to do so were handwriting books and documents for well over 1,000 years before the invention of the printing press. Continue with Printing Press in 1448, letter writing and postman, telegraph, telephone, radio, photography and television. Except cave paintings, all kinds of this communication methods still exist now. Throughout history developments in technology and communications have gone hand-in-hand, and the latest technological developments such as the internet have resulted in the advancement of the science of communication to a new level. Moreover, the innovation of new gadgets such as mobile phones makes communication easier by allowing people to communicate from anywhere. An underestimated impact of mobile gadgets is their impact on the nature of communications.

Communication based on internet, nowadays is so popular and can make a new movement in large community. Also, change almost life style to communicate in urban area. Changing from passive way to active way. Before, people just accept information and late to get response at the same time. But now, information can spread fastly around the world in seconds and free from the barriers of distance and time.

In recent times, it is the social media that has made a significant impact on our daily lives. The kind of global conversation that social media websites, such as Facebook and Twitter, have developed was beyond the comprehension of most people at the beginning of the decade. Social media has influenced social behaviour in several ways, such as:

  • People today are more open and want to communicate with others.
  • People want to meet like-minded people through online forums and groups.
  • People want to have access to news and information that can be of use to them.
  • People want to share more with others and gain recognition simultaneously.

Hence, social media has made us more transparent in our communication with others. It’s no longer about trying to be perfect, but about revealing and sharing our thoughts and expressions.

We may also consider the case of online communities. There has been a rapid growth of social relations and social organisations on the internet (Di Maggio, Hargittai, Neuman, & Robinson, 2001; Wellman, 2002). The emergence of new forms of online social networks demonstrates new communication patterns in the digital age. Online communities and social networks have led to debates about the emergence of new patterns of social interaction. With new technology, individuals are reorganising patterns of social interaction to create a new form of society, which is conceived as the network society. Online communities shed light on the emergence of new forms of sociability enabled by technology, a departure from previously spatially bounded social interaction.

Advancement of technology today is not without obstacles. And a big problem also is how a message in the information that we want to deliver, can be received by the intended target community.

“Culture” is often at the root of communication challenges. Our culture influences how we approach problems, and how we participate in groups and in communities. When we participate in groups we are often surprised at how differently people approach their work together. Culture is a complex concept, with many different definitions. But, simply put, “culture” refers to a group or community with which we share common experiences that shape the way we understand the world.

There are six fundamental patterns of cultural differences-ways in which cultures, as a whole, tend to vary from one another.

  1. Different Communication Styles

The way people communicate varies widely between, and even within, cultures. One aspect of communication style is language usage. Across cultures, some words and phrases are used in different ways. Another major aspect of communication style is the degree of importance given to non-verbal communication. Non-verbal communication includes not only facial expressions and gestures; it also involves seating arrangements, personal distance, and sense of time. In addition, different norms regarding the appropriate degree of assertiveness in communicating can add to cultural misunderstandings.

2. Different Attitudes Toward Conflict

Some cultures view conflict as a positive thing, while others view it as something to be avoided.

3. Different Approaches to Completing Tasks

From culture to culture, there are different ways that people move toward completing tasks. Some reasons include different access to resources, different judgments of the rewards associated with task completion, different notions of time, and varied ideas about how relationship-building and task-oriented work should go together.

4. Different Decision-Making Styles

The roles individuals play in decision-making vary widely from culture to culture. Be aware that individuals’ expectations about their own roles in shaping a decision may be influenced by their cultural frame of reference.

5. Different Attitudes Toward Disclosure

In some cultures, it is not appropriate to be frank about emotions, about the reasons behind a conflict or a misunderstanding, or about personal information. Keep this in mind when you are in a dialogue or when you are working with others. When you are dealing with a conflict, be mindful that people may differ in what they feel comfortable revealing.

6. Different Approaches to Knowing

Notable differences occur among cultural groups when it comes to epistemologies, the ways people come to know things. European cultures tend to consider information acquired through cognitive means, such as counting and measuring, more valid than other ways of coming to know things. Compare that to African cultures’ preference for affective ways of knowing, including symbolic imagery and rhythm. Asian cultures’ epistemologies tend to emphasize the validity of knowledge gained through striving toward transcendence.

If we know about culture in community well, then we might use the appropriate way to communicate, based on target community and its culture also. So, our message can be accepted by target groups, like what we expect.

References:

DuPraw, M.E. and Axner M. (1997). Working on Common Cross-cultural Communication Challenges. (http://www.pbs.org/ampu/crosscult.html)

Nayab N. (2010). Exploring How Technology Has Changed Communication. (http://www.brighthubpm.com/methods-strategies/79052-exploring-how-technology-has-changed-communication/)

UK Essays. (2013). How Social Media Has Changed the Way We Communicate.  (http://www.informationgateway.org/social-media-changed-communicate/)

….. History of Communication From Cave Drawings To The Web. (http://www.creativedisplaysnow.com/articles/history-of-communication-from-cave-drawings-to-the-web.htm)

Movius, L. (2010) ‘Cultural Globalisation and Challenges to Traditional Communication Theories’, PLATFORM: Journal of Media and Communication 2(1) (January): 6-18. ISSN: 1836-5132 Online © Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Australia licence

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