Friday, July 30, 2010

The death of the phone call

This week I've been working on a proposal for a second book (I'll tell you what it's about if I get a book contract) and an article for a Patheos.com series on "The Future of Evangelicalism." I'm the only person on the list of contributors to that series that I haven't heard of.

A while back I linked to Sophia Dembling's post at the Introvert Corner about her hatred of the telephone: Don't Call Us, We'll Call You, Well No Actually We Probably Won't

Today on Wired Magazine's website, Clive Thompson has an article called "The Death of Phone Call." Here's an excerpt that I resonate with:
Consider: If I suddenly decide I want to dial you up, I have no way of knowing whether you’re busy, and you have no idea why I’m calling. We have to open Schrödinger’s box every time, having a conversation to figure out whether it’s OK to have a conversation. Plus, voice calls are emotionally high-bandwidth, which is why it’s so weirdly exhausting to be interrupted by one. (We apparently find voicemail even more excruciating: Studies show that more than a fifth of all voice messages are never listened to.)

What are your thoughts? Is the phone call dead? Are introverts particularly averse to unexpected phone calls?