Anyone knows that a weapon in the hands of someone who doesn’t know how to use it is a dangerous thing…just ask this guy!

It would be common sense not to give a youth a handgun, saracen sword, drugs, alcohol, or a Twilight series book…all of these can cause severe damage!  But what about a cell phone?  You wouldn’t think a cell phone would cause any real damage…would you?

Today’s post focuses on the growing dilemma that texting is causing for many teens across North America, and the world.  Texting is a simple and quick way in which to stay connected to people you wish to communicate with.  But there are also disadvantages to texting, many of which involve an increasing dis-connect with social surroundings, relationships, and common ethics.  For example, have you ever been people watching at the mall, in a park, on the bus or in a school area?  On any given day, in any given surrounding, at any given moment you’ll see groups of people (not always teens/youth either!) gathered around/near each other in close proximity, yet each one is solely focused on their tiny phone screen with incoming text messages.  You can be in conversation with 3 other people at once, yet completely ignore the ones right in front/beside you.  Or how about this scenario…you wake up late and are running behind schedule, and instead of actually calling your boss to inform them of your impending lateness, you just text a quick ‘running late…be there in 20’ message to them.  Or in the worst cases, the aftermath of a highway accident after a distracted texter causes a serious collision.

Texting, on its own, seems harmless and can actually be more convenient in our attempt to communicate…especially quickly and with multiple people.  But it’s one area that is quickly eroding our ability to engage in real-life conversations, and instead opting for the quick, multi-tasking and limited accountability option.  In addition to increased and instant accessibility, the texting generation (or Gen Text) has also brought about a slew of issues and questions.  In the right hands, it’s a great communication tool.  In the wrong hands, it can become a weapon of bullying, financial duress, physical injury, and relational dis-connect.

The following three articles offer some insight into the struggles and frustrations that the texting generation is experiencing, and causing, particularly among our youth.

Youth Culture Window post: (More) Trouble with Texting
ReadWriteWeb article: Why Parents Care About Teenager Texting
Common Sense Media‘s report: When Texting Turns to Torment

What are your thoughts on the Pro’s and Con’s of texting?

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