« Paying Their Way: David Wharton on financing Olympic athletes | Main | More than just a game: Daily Nebraskan on the role of the IOC »



Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


As we spend more and more time with our noses pressed to a screen we get more and more stupid,communication is the essence of life.Real conversations face to face that is life.

Meghan Cosgrove

When communicating with another person face to face, not just words form the conversation. The tone of voice, laughter, touch, staring of the eyes, mood from the environment, the surroundings, and posture, etc. all constitute the conversation. There is data everywhere, all around us to be taken in. We live in an era where we are engaged in communication all the time whether in texts, emails, phone calls, or Facebook, etc. Turkle while researching for her new book provides examples of the conversations people are having today in society, from the “pair of high-school-age girls walking down Boylston Street, silent, typing, the table of brunchers ignoring their mimosas (and one another) in favor of their screens, the kid in the stroller playing with an iPad.” We are communicating all the time, now more than ever. However, the difference is we are talking at each other rather than to each other. All this talk comes at the expense of conversation. It is a two way street that involves a connection from one another. Garber translates Turkle’s perception of conversations saying, “Conversations, as they tend to play out in person, are messy—full of pauses and interruptions and topic changes and assorted awkwardness. But the messiness is what allows for true exchange. It gives participants the time—and, just as important, the permission—to think and react and glean insights.” In the Boston Apple Store, filled with products of connection, Garber sees conversation all around from kids playing games on iPhones, customers getting tips from T-shirted workers, and people chatting as they stare into screens either enormous or comically small. Turkle surveys the atmosphere, pointing out the airy space, streaked with sunlight, bustling with people, and thunderous with the din of human voices. However, all that the people are talking about is what is going on, on the screen of their machines, even though there is so much more to engage in with one another and all that is going on around them. They are “Alone Together.”
I think with the high demand use of technology my conversation habits have become affected by “screen habits.” I know that many times over text messaging I misjudge what people are actually saying to me. I interpret things the wrong way. I may mistake constructive criticism as unwanted judgment. Recognizing this, however, I have learned to be more open to what someone may say or text me during conversation. To be more attentive or engaged during face-to-face conversations, I try to listen more. This includes repeating back what someone has said to me or using the “I heard” statement. I never used to be satisfied with my conversations, but taking part in family therapy and communication courses I definitely now am more satisfied. I use to wait for a minute and if someone did not text me back right away I would be annoyed. After reading this article, I was enlightened to learn pauses, moments to let the person take in what is being said, is a significant part of conversation. It lets you know the person is really listening not dismissing you.
I agree with Turkle. We should put away our devices in sacred spaces like the dinner table. This is crucial because an active part of conversation is listening. How can that be possible if we are constantly interrupted with a phone call or text from someone? Wouldn’t it be considered rude if we were engaged in a face-to-face conversation and were stopped for a moment by a stranger face to face, to talk to them while the other person was standing right there? So why shouldn’t that go for phone calls and texts as well. “The Internet is always on. And it’s always judging you, watching you, goading you. “That’s not conversation,” Turkle says. This is a great example of what is considered conversation today, but I say it’s not conversation as well. We cannot ask why the person says this, or where their information came from, or why their feeling what their feeling. We cannot get the full message across because there is no tone of voice, or look in the eyes, or posture to understand what that person truly is saying and feeling. There is no connection.

Vinita Santiago

Modernized communication has obviously increased in its frequency, but has been diluted by the way it is expressed. Everyone is utilizing some sort of mechanical device to converse. This proves the personal aspect of face-to-face interaction to be a skill that younger generations will struggle with in the real world. Lets face it, the world of acronyms and abbreviations is not adding to the development of strong written and verbal language skills. People are more comfortable sending a text, than speaking in person or even on the telephone. As Turkle suggests, in order to have conversations that are “supremely human” the use of electronic devices in everyday life needs to be regulated to certain times and places. I agree with Turkle’s view on this topic because ultimately, what is at stake here is the communicational abilities of current and future generations.
Parents need to be effective communicators. My husband and I are committed parents and feel that we try to raise our children responsibly, provide economic support, and most of all having three girls: emotional security. In order to provide these things we have make ourselves available and spend the right kind of time interacting with our children. The most important aspect is communication, both verbal and non-verbal. These skills will help our children become successful adults, especially in their careers. For instance, you never hear of a person getting hired who didn’t make proper eye contact or speak in a well-versed manner. These are skills learned in everyday interactions with the people closest to us.
Although there are many devices in which to support this theory, I will choose to elaborate on a widespread commonality among all families: the use of cell phones. Clearly, cell phone use has increased over last decade. I believe it is safe to say that mostly every household is in possession of one. This is an example of an external factor that has changed the way families and people communicate. Many families spend more time on their phones then they do in actual conversations or interactions. For example, there are many times I pick my daughter up from school and the parent is on the phone the entire time. The child is just lingering behind and there is no social interaction between the parent and child. This became such an issue that the school had to post up a sign on the door that read “ Put away your cell phone, your child wants you to ask how their day was”.
This commonality among cellphone use and families has become such a trend that people see nothing wrong with it. In fact, the whole perspective on family time has changed to limit personable moments and increase device usage. Clearly, reducing the way in which electronic devices are incorporated into everyday life can have a beneficial effect on the humanness that communication is associated with, but the struggle comes with breaking the unconscious awareness that people are lacking to comprehend. If people become mindful about when and where they indulge in device use and encourage “phone free zones” the communicational skills of generations to come may have a chance.



Mitchell Rose

People spend more time on their phones and computers than they do face-to-face interaction. While texting and emailing does suffice as a conversation. The face-to-face interaction isn't their though so we are losing contact and the content of messages. A lot of things can be lost in translation, they aren't real conversations. In order to get back to reality, people need to stop texting all the time and actually go talk to people.

Evan Keeney

When communicating through a computer screen, there is no emotion, facial expressions, and sound. The essential tools for humans to communicate; however, I believe the language we use while texting or emailing is making us smarter. This has been proven through research, kids who started texting at a young age have managed to earn higher scores on their test.
As usual, the older generation is worried about the development of the younger generation. " The difference is we are talking at each other rather than to each other." In a way that makes no sense to me, isn't that technically the same action? From my personal experience, I can communicate thoroughly with technology and speech. I really haven't seen any problems with technology interfering with our communication skills.


Now days people communicate using technology way more than they do face to face with other human beings. I think that this is a bad thing, but I'm also one of those people. In today's world texting or communicating electronically is so much easier than talking in person. With my smartphone I can instantly communicate and talk to dozens of people no matter where they are. While talking and communicating in person is limited to the people around you. Technology has made it a lot easier to talk and communicate with people but it's starting to take over our physical world. I believe you should have a healthy balance between the two.


As technology is improving, it is affecting how we communicate one-on-one. By communicating electronically we misunderstand the message being said, and the emotion of the text. Even though it is easier to communicate through technology like computers and phones but like what Garber said we are technically not talking to each other. But I believe that it is shaping our language today. I enjoy communicating through technology it helps me feel more confident. Technology is changing the world for the better.

Taylor Malseed

Meghan and Vinita made some great points here and I couldn’t agree more with their views of Turtle’s article. We live in a world where we are engaged in communication all the time whether it’s through a cell phone or on the computer. We are constantly talking at each other rather than to each other, losing the voice, tone, mood, laughter, surroundings, appearance that comes within a face-to-face conversation. This causes things to get lost in translation and interpreted the wrong way. I’m just as much to blame, always communicating electronically rather than face to face. In my opinion, people also hide behind technology because they’re to scared to say things face-to-face, ultimately teaching us nothing. Although many will say technology is easier, it’s beginning to take over. Their needs to be a balance, there’s a time for it and there’s a time without it. The dinner table being a time with out it. Like Meghan says, how could we be possibly listening to one another at the dinner table if were on our cell phones? If people limited the amount of technology usage and found a balance future generation’s communication skills would hopefully improve.

Victoria Ogunleye

Common sense seems to dictate that when you are a t a dinner table you put your phone away and engage in conversations. For years now, people always argue if technology is a helping the human race or hurting the human race. The problem is that technology is actually doing both. In the blog post "Not boring, not at all: Megan Garber converses with Sherry Turkle", Garber and Turkle have a conversation about how communication is skills are lost. Turkle believes that problem is people talk at each other rather than towards each other. When I get on Instagram or twitter and I retweet a friend's tweet or like their picture it’s a sign that I feel the same way or that I liked the picture they posted. It's a since of bonding in a weird technological way. We connect through social networks, it means that I feel the same way as you and we share the same likes or views or find the same things in common. So when my friends and I get together and most of us are on our phones, yes it is sad that we are not speaking. But if one of us come across something funny on twitter we share it to one another and a conversation forms. I do believe Turkle's term we are truly alone together because at night if someone post a picture that says like if you’re up alone and bored , and then 25 people like the picture we are all up alone and bored together. I think parts of technology bonds people together but impairs the way they communicate with others.

Caitlin Moore

Chrystal makes a relevant point here stating that technology is affecting how we communicate, however where I disagree with her, is where she says technology is changing the world for the better. Yes it could help with self confidence, however, that confidence is behind a screen and not in person. Face to face conversations are happening less and less everyday and as a result conversations are getting more and more awkward because people don't know how to respond right away or keep a conversation going. At this point I believe technology use can go either way; it could be a real breakthrough, giving us access to things we couldn't access before, or it could be a hindrance that continues to create a sense of false confidence behind the screen of every day gadgets.

katie sauter

I really enjoyed this article and felt that it touched on a lot of big issues we deal with today. With the growth of technology, we have lost sight of the importance of human interaction and conversation. Everyone is glued to their devices and completely forget they are surrounded by other people. I feel that we are letting our kids forget how to communicate with one another. Other than social media and texts. Having a little one i find nothing more aggravating then watching little kids glued to the tablets and the parents glued to their phone, just like she mentioned. Now a days you have to read a status up date just to find out how your child's day went. Being raised that you didn't even answer the phone during dinner. Technology has helped us in many ways and the advances are great, but it is also hurting us.

Matthew Ramirez

Megan Garber has many great points that she brings up in the article "Saving the Lost Art of Conversation" that help emphasize her point of view. In the article Garber say shes going to be boring in the conversation that boring is good that it lead to more depth of conversation that awkwardness and pauses lead to deeper thought exchange in a conversation that one would not get from texting or some social media but in person.

Marketa Golden

I believe that relationships in general are losing their sense of familiarity and relation because of the way we communicate today. I believe that as long as you are communicating over technology you'll never be able to directly communicate efficiently and effectively face to face. The significance of the usage of technology and communicating is that no matter where you are or what you are doing you can still keep in touch with your loved ones. The downfall of always using technology is that you'll never be able to determine the sincerity in someone's words because there would be no physical indication of how they actually feel.
I believe that actions work hand in hand with words. Being able to communicate face to face is a hard skill to master in today's society and I can understand why one would desire to just communicate through technology. Holding conversations in person allows more lead way to say what you actually feel to the person right then and there because you get immediate responses whether verbal or physical. All in all I believe that technology is ruining relationships and day to day conversation.


To be honest, life is all about being there in the moment and having fun with the people you care about. Conversation isn't meant to always be the same way. I don't remember talking to a friend in the eye and saying "lol" every time I finished a sentence. That really isn't human interaction as Sherry Turkle may say. I've read in an article called "How much of Communication is Really Non-Verbal?" and as the title suggests the article answers the question of how much communication is non-verbal and Blake, the author of the article, had shown that communication is 93 percent non-verbal. Texting and social media only convey that 7% of the verbal communication spoken not even from our mouths. It is time to make a change.

Nytia Molock

1.) 1.) Boring can be good by it can provide various aspects for not over doing certain things and just being neutral in certain situations. Sherry Turkle’s argument about the value of “boring” in a conversation was basically her explaining the importance of how being boring or dull in a conversation helps bring out the best in conversations and it allows for people to be able to react and gather information from one another. In the text, Sherry Turkle says “Conversations, as they tend to play out in person, are messy – full of pauses and interruptions and topic changes and assorted awkwardness. But the messiness is what allows for true exchange” (Turkle 3). In other words, she’s explaining how without the messiness of a conversation, it wouldn’t allow for the people in a conversation to really get the full connection of the conversation by having time to think and respond appropriately. Lastly, Megan Garber says “Some of the best conversations are, as Turkle puts it, “the boring bits.” In software terms, they’re features rather than bugs” (Garber 3). In other words, Garber was explaining how Turkle believes that the awkward boring parts of the conversation should be praised rather than turned down because they provide important parts for the conversation to be its best. In conclusion, based off of Turkle’s beliefs of wanting us to be dull in conversations, I agree with her on how they do add on to the conversation and without them, the conversation wouldn’t be as normal.

Keri Whitehaus

In the article, Sherry Turkle makes the point that humans don't have real conversations anymore. She makes the point that we are always communicating through technology, and we even do it at times when we should be embracing face-to-face conversations. She noticed that a lot of families should focus on each other during intimate and interactive activities even as simple as dinner. Turkle believes that the boring parts of a conversation should be expected and celebrated because we are human. Specifically, Turkle says "Occasional dullness, in other words, is to be not only expected, but celebrated." In other words, Turkle is saying that the boring parts of the conversation is what makes the conversation interesting and real.

I agree with Turkle's argument. We spend entirely too much time on our phones and laptops, and we are not appreciating the intimate interactions we have with those that are close to us. For example, my family used to play Yahtzee every Saturday night with my grandparents. However, once everyone got updated technology, we actually started playing Yahtzee on our devices because it was more convenient to sit in the living room rather than spending time to clean off the kitchen table. It was still fun, but it wasn't as intense and nerve wracking as playing the real game. Therefore, we need to start putting down our devices to have real interactions with those around us or else we might regret it down the line.

Dakota C. Jackson

In the article “Saving the Lost Art of Conversation” by Megan Garber, she emphasizes Turkle’s assertion that “boring” is good because it brings out the buzz of the discussion. Turkle’s argument about the value of “boring” in a conversation mainly explains how a conversation isn’t necessarily a good one if it isn’t somehow boring. It’s what makes a discussion interesting. Megan Garber says, “Occasional dullness, in other words, is to be not only expected, but celebrated. Some of the best parts of conversation are, as Turkle puts it, “the boring bits.” In software term, they’re features rather than bugs” (Garber 4). In other words, the boring bits is what brings controversy which is like having a real conversation. It’s not exactly going to go the way you want it to. The problem, Turkle argues has to be that people these days are talking at each other, referring to our devices, than with each other. (Garber 4) I do somewhat agree with Sherry Turkle that some of the best parts of a conversation is the boring are the boring bits and is not necessarily a bad thing.

Keith White

In the article “Saving the Lost Art of Conversation” by Megan Garber, she emphasizes Turkle’s belief that “boring” is good because it can provide various aspects for not over doing things and just being neutral in certain situations. Sherry Turkle’s argument about boring in a conversation with someone was that the importance of how boring a conversation is helps the best in communicating, as well as allows for people to be able to react and even gather certain information from one another. Sherry Turkle says, “Conversations, as they tend to play out in person, are messy – full of pauses and interruptions and topic changes and assorted awkwardness. But the messiness is what allows for true exchange” (Turkle 3). What Turkle is trying to say is that in a face-to-face conversation people don’t have time to think or react as slowly as they would like, when in a conversation people get overwhelmed and anxious about what to say which causes people to make mistakes and makes time for “boring” in a conversation. I do agree with Turkle that the “boring” part of a conversation can be the best part of the conversation because that’s really when peoples true feelings come out, you can tell if someone is nervous, anxious and if someone likes the other person by awkward “boring” moments in a conversation.

Keith White, Ms. Scheffenacker

Shannon B

In this article, "boring" can be good because during conversations you can not tell when the conversation is going to become intriguing. Turkle's argument about the value of "boring" is that it can be good because you can learn things about people that you would not be able to do over a screen. I do agree with Sherry Turkle for the following reason everyone is so caught up in their phones that they miss the special moments that can not have again. Garber implies that "Turkle wants us to reclaim the permission to be, when we want and need to be, dull" (Garber 11). She means that we should not always be consumed in our phones during certain occasions, that it's okay to engage in conversation. To conclude, "boring" conversations are essential to have because you can discover information on people and spark up good conversations.

M. Alberti

In the article "Saving the Lost Art of Conversation," Megan Garber and Sherry Turkle make the argument that being boring is a good thing and allows for true conversation with others. "Some of the best parts of conversation are, as Turkle puts it, 'the boring bits." Real face-to-face conversations are going to have the awkward pauses but those pauses and many other things are what makes conversation an exchange. I value the free time I get with my parents so putting my phone away and focusing on conversing with them is important to me. It is sad to think about the world's definition of a conversation: "talking at each other rather than with each other."

Deshae Blake-Markham

In the article “Not Boring at All: Megan Garber Converses with Sherry Turkle”, Turkle argues that people do not have face-to-face interactions anymore. Turkle claims that everything we do is through technology and we use it so much we do not communicate like how people back in the day used to before technology was advanced, face-to-face technology should be embraced more because it uses real emotions. Turkle believes that even if the conversation is boring it should be expected because it shows the real of having face-to-face interactions because that what makes us only human. Turkle says, "Occasional dullness, in other words, is to be not only expected, but celebrated" (Garber 4). The essence of Turkle’s argument is that the not so interesting parts of the conversation is what makes the conversation genuine because there is some emotion lying there.
I agree with Turkle's claim. We as people spend a lot of time on our many devices and do not really connect with each other like how normal people used to. For an example my family and I would have dinner together in the same room, now that we have phones, laptops and tablets we would rather sit and eat in our rooms while on our devices talking to other people instead of each other.

Meghan Incantalupo

Garber emphasizes Turkle’s assertion that “boring” is good. How can boring be good? Summarize Turkle’s argument about the value of “boring” in a conversation. Do you agree? Why or why not?

Turkl's assertion that "boring" is good made me think about the little things that happen everyday. Boring can be good, we lose track of everything in our constantly busy life that focusing even on the most boring conversation about anything makes the day a little bit different. I agree that boring is one of the most important things in life. We have all these amazing things that we forget how amazing the boring things can be. Take doing homework, we do homework on the comouter all the time, but being a design major I get to take a step back and do my homework without a computer, and although there is no fancy features or a shortcut I genuinally enjoy the effort and time it takes to do something without a screen in front of me.

Nick Sampson

As Garber explains that being boring is good can be explained in our day to day lives we get over worked up and over stressed at just about everything.People have very interesting lives but when Garber explains that being boring is good, by the way you can actually understand the persons thoughts and feelings. The great thing about this article is that she explains when your engaged in a real life conversation you know and understand when a conversation begins to get stale and what not. I agree with her argument because you cannot always grasp what someone is trying to explain over text message. Its very easy to misinterpret someone conversation if its through text thats why its better to have a conversation face to face. You can notice peoples emotion when your speaking in person which is another key reason why its better to talk in person.

Tara Pergerson

1)In the article, Turkle represents boring as a valuable trait in which not many people have anymore. With today’s technology as the major distraction our daily conversations are no longer “supremely human” we tend to occupy our attention on our devices while still trying to maintain an in person conversation. Turkle also expresses the point in which we use our devices inappropriately in “sacred places”, the dinner table and family events are both examples of places where we should enjoy what we may call the dull and boring times. The dull moments can bring pleasure and a better human to human connection, especially when there’s no distraction during those memorable times.

I agree with Turkle’s argument mostly because life is short, we spend so much unnecessary time trying to multitask both our electronic devices, while still trying to have a face to face conversation that we don’t realize that were missing the whole point of the face to face part . If we could be able to put down the devices and focus on the conversation with our undivided attention we would then be able to grasp the idea and cherish those moments.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)