Communication Media

[Note: There’s basically no point to this post. But hey, it’s the Internet. That’s allowed here.]

Media I can use to communicate with people I know in person:

  • Phone call. The highest-bandwidth and lowest-latency medium, unless you get voicemail. But somehow the least preferred.
  • Text message. Annoyingly brief and usually vapid; useful for arranging meetings or telling someone you can’t go to their party when you’d rather not have to explain on the phone.
  • Facebook message. Either wall post or private message. You can talk as much as you want, but in public you’d rather not and most private messages are just messages sent to groups to inform them that a party is coming up. (In my experience, anyway.)
  • Instant messenger, like MSN or AIM. You will never have a group of friends that entirely uses one protocol or another; there’ll always be the one or two people using a different system. IMs are convenient and fast, you can keep logs for yourself, and it’s a lot easier to type on a keyboard than on a phone; still, IM clients aren’t as portable. (If you have one on your iPhone you have to type with the tiny keyboard.)
  • Email. The original electronic communication method. It’s now basically the Snail Mail of the Internet, though emails only take two seconds to arrive most of the time. For some reason many people I know don’t use email for serious messaging at all, sticking to Facebook or text messaging.
  • Smoke signal. This is arguably my favorite system, although it is difficult to find willing people to communicate with and the fire department tends to show up a lot.

I’m the sort of person that likes to keep things archived. I have all of my email since my current email accounts opened; I have all instant messages logged and I keep offline copies of the (very few, as it happens) Facebook private messages I actually deem important. Text messaging presents a problem because there’s no good way to archive it, and of course nobody likes having their phone calls recorded.

My obsessive-compulsive need to have a cohesive record of my past isn’t being fulfilled! Stupid technology.


  1. HAHAHA at recording phone calls, good luck with that one.

    Sadly, smoke fades and so is pretty hard to archive too.

    People should email more…it’s a lot less fickly than Facebook messages are.

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