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Learning from Miscommunication- Reflection on Choosing the Wrong Communication Channel

Learning from Miscommunication- Reflection on Choosing the Wrong Communication Channel

Texting A Friend Who Was Leaving Rather Than Meeting Face To Face

Sometime back, a friend we had grown up with since childhood called me while I was at work about meeting up for he was about to leave the country for Australia, where he intended to stay for four years of his university education. I missed his call and opted to text him instead during my lunch hour when I was free. It is crucial to note that during the texting, the brevity that texting has, accompanied by the absence of verbal tone, eye contact, facial expressions, and even body language, made it slightly onerous for the communication process to be efficacious. It is because we both had to explain more on some things that would not need explanation if we were to meet face to face. Besides, when one of us responded with a single sentence, it came out as brief, which inadvertently made the other person think they were disinterested in the conversation.

Also, given that I was amongst other friends of mine and we were having a conversation together as we had lunch and were waiting for the commencement of the following class, I had to keep quiet and refrain from involving myself in the discourse. Only then was I able to respond to the text messages promptly? Any delay in the texting would have one or both of us pissed because the assumption was that the other person had seen the message but was deliberately ignoring it. In this case, it suffices to maintain that the interrelationship that we had between us during the course of the conversation that we had on text messages was terse, brief, and emotionally taxing. In this case, one went from one emotional extreme to another. It was due to the misunderstanding that we often had in the discourse. For instance, someone would have to justify why they put some capital letters or words that were ungrammatical and which inadvertently altered the message’s meaning. It was a terse conversation.

Still, it is crucial to understand that people often get easily engrossed during texting, all at the expense of their surroundings (Goodman, 2019). I was distracted by the texting even to realize that in the group that I was hanging out with, one of the friends had asked me a question, and they were waiting for my reply, it seemed rude when I failed to respond as I was so engrossed with the mobile phone.

Furthermore, when the notion of texting comes to mind, it is vital to comprehend that it is intended for straightforward, short messaging, and it is a poor conveyor of subtle or complex information. In this case, I intended to text him a long message that intended to encourage him, wish him luck, and several other things that I wished he would do once he went there, but I was unable to. I was essentially unable to write in such a way that would be emotionally sensitive. It was difficult to hit the right tone in the message and gauge my friend’s reaction on the other end of the line. This is why at times, we had a problem with either feeling insulted, confused, angry, or upset both of us, whether the other party knew or did not. Also, the fact that we were chatting with my friend had me thinking of how much the level of vocabulary was. In this case, both our chats were characterized by poor spelling and grammar. The discourse was also marked with incomplete and abbreviated sentences, which I was sure had a detrimental ramification on both of us.

Lastly, I firmly believe that face-to-face interaction with my departing friend would have been the most effective by far, of all other forms of communication. As such, it is imperative to understand that this form of communication would make conversations more fruitful, as it has better non-verbal communication.


Goodman, P. (2019). 12 Disadvantages of Texting.


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For this assignment, think back to a time when you think you used the wrong channel to convey a message to someone in your life. Examples could be sending a text message to break up with someone, or emailing a boss when in both situations you should have talked to them face to face.

Learning from Miscommunication- Reflection on Choosing the Wrong Communication Channel

Learning from Miscommunication- Reflection on Choosing the Wrong Communication Channel

Be descriptive, and use as much detail in your examples as possible.

1. Describe the relationship you have/had with the person in the interaction.
2. Explain which channel you used initially and why you think it was the wrong means to communicate with them.
3. Explain which channel would have been better for the situation and why you think it would have been more effective.

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