People, I have discovered, are not particularly good at saying what they mean, and often misinterpret what other people say to them.
Humans mainly communicate with words, and these days, it is more often the written word, rather than the spoken, in emails, letters or on social media.
It is easy, just by missing out a comma, for example, for a sentence to have two different meanings, or more, depending on how you read it, so the message you give out could be misunderstood. This is easy to see, and correct, if you are actually talking face to face!
It is important to remember, that it is not always the actual words that people say that is important, it is the emotion and thinking behind those words. In an email or letter, this can be almost impossible to determine.
Twitter is a little better, because you can have conversations with other people, and ask questions, and over time, you get to know them and their writing style.
What is missing in writing, is all the other means of communication, the ones that dogs use more than people – body language, smell, eye contact and just that ‘gut feeling’ you get when you talk to someone.
One downside, is that some are taken in by the words of dishonest people, who write lies, very convincingly, to trick them. Mom calls this fraud, and it seems to be happening more frequently, as people use the internet more and talk less.
It is much harder to trick someone in person, because even humans can read basic body language. Dogs are much better at this.
For example, Mom could call me a disgusting, smelly, farty hound, (she did once) but if she says it in her happy, laughy voice and a smile, I translate it as “Bella, you are gorgeous and I love you” which is what she means to say of course!
If she had sent me those words in text, and I could not see her, I might have thought she meant it! For a little while at least!
Facial expression, tone of voice, and body language are harder to fake, and easier to read, than a written sentence, even from someone you love.
So while writing is important, for stories, newspapers, instruction manuals, history books and love letters (I wish), let us hope that this does not one day, replace real communication.
Because after all, despite the presence of emojis, (!) nothing says as much as a beaming smile and the look of love in someone’s eyes.