If you have teens or pre-teens at home, how much time do they spend texting their friends, vs. actually talking to their friends?
According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project show that many teens—and young adults--prefer texting over a phone call.
And some believe that's creating a communication divide--the talkers vs. the texters.
In an Associated Press story by Martha Irvine, several experts are quoted as saying the most successful communicators will have the ability to talk OR text—and will know the appropriate times to use those skills.
And they fear that many young people are losing the ability to have the face-to-face conversations that are so important in the workplace and personal relationships.
Janet Sternberg, a professor of communication and media studies at Fordham University says "It is an art that's becoming as valuable as good writing.”
Dr. Sternberg has noticed that more and more students don't look her in the eye and have trouble with the very basics of direct conversation.
She asks her students to give up one form of electronic communication to see what kind of difference it makes in their lives.
Joseph Grenny, co-author of the book "Crucial Conversations” suggests that those of us who are parents need to model appropriate communication skills for our kids, set appropriate limits on texting, and put down our own mobile devices.
That could be tough for some parents to do—the other day I saw a mom and her teenage daughter sitting together in a restaurant. They barely said a word to each other during the entire meal. That’s because they spent most of their time texting. Is it possible that they were texting—each other???
I’m Bill Maier for WBCL.