April 15, 2009

Somebody at LifeHacker is Smoking Crack

Wow, Lifehacker is a great web site that I love, but they dropped the ball on this one:
[When communicating with your boss over IM,] misunderstandings are fewer than with face-to-face conversations and meetings, it seems, because everything's spelled out, archived, and, if necessary, CC'd, whereas face-to-face sessions introduce all kinds of deflections, tone/content disagreements, and failings from the faultiness of human memory.
I don't even know where to begin with this one. I'm sure they needed to concoct some reason to post this story, but did they really have to put this shiny happy spin on it? Really? Tone/content disagreements are more prevalent in face-to-face communication than in IM? Maybe it is because of Kevin's (the article's author) electronic-only contact with Adam (his editor at LH) that produced this. I can imagine it like this:

Kevin: Hey Adam, since we communicate so well, and I'm great at my job and you love me, maybe I can editorialize a little bit here that electronic communication is as good as, no no, scratch that -- BETTER than face-to-face communication.
Adam: <thinks Kevin is joking> Great. Post it.
Kevin: <thinks Adam is serious> Sweet, done!
Adam: <still thinks Kevin is joking> Great!

Have we really learned nothing at all? Are we turning into robots? (Not that I'd be opposed to that, but, still ... just thought I'd ask, in case I missed the memo.)

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