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Quality of Interpersonal Communication in the Digital Era

Quality of Interpersonal Communication in the Digital Era
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—Era of globalization and development in digital
technology this time was enriching the development in
communication form or feature, for example the Internet. This
new media showed implications in
various fields, which are, the
implications in business s
ector, media’s management,
advertisement, and the social community network including the
behavior of his communication.
Development of the new media
that convergent, made the communication process between
people become easier and faster. We can communicate with
people around the world quickly and directly. Internet with
various facilities like, Chat, e-mail, voice mail, etc has changed
the behavior of its consumer. Fr
om various implications that
arise due to the development of information technology and
Communication this time, the authors was interested in
researching about social impact from ICT development in the
community. The aim of this research is to know quality of
interpersonal communication in social contexts in digital era.
This research study is person
al opinion using qualitative
descriptive method, where data is collected through depth
interviews with informants, which are Y (native) generation
digital and X generation in Jakar
ta. The results showed that the
quality of interpersonal communication can be done not only
through face to face, but it also done through the media depend
on context and situation. In the normal context, communication
by face to face and via the media has a same degree of quality.
While in the conflict context, communication through the media
are more qualified compare to communication by face to face.
This study is hopefully could be useful as a reference for further
research and can obtain a helpful information about social
impact of digital media in particularly Indonesian community, so
it can useful as a various parties in addressing the impact of new
media and also become inputs for the manufacture of regulation
in this field.
Index Terms
—Interpersonal communication, personal
opinion, social context, digital era.
Communication has a different type and level. There are
two general type of communication namely direct and
indirect communication. Direct communication is
face-to-face process communication between people from
one another. Indirect communication requires a media to
convey the message, for example: TV, Internet, newspapers,
and others. From two type of communication above,
communication is divided again into two types, namely
verbal and non verbal. Verbal communication is such as
conversation (oral) and
written. While nonverbal
communication could be a body language (gesture), image,
color, physical appearance, and others. Communication has
Manuscript received June 24,
2013; revised August 20, 2013.
Nawiroh Vera is lecturer in Faculty of Communication Science, Budi
Luhur University, Jakarta, Jl. Ciledug Raya, Petukangan Utara, Jakarta
12020 Indonesia (e-mail: Lnawir
difference kind of level according
to the expert, but basically
that level is distinguished by the number of people involved
in the communication process, namely: intrapersonal
communication, interpersonal communication, group
communication, and mass communication. Each has its own
Interpersonal communication is simply defined by Joseph
De Vito as “Sending a message from someone and be
accepted by others and getting
a direct feedback”. While
Everett M Rogers emphasized
the important elements in
interpersonal communication is
there will be a face to face
process, although some other experts claim that interpersonal
communication can also be done by telephone or telex media
as a channel of interpersonal communication. Rapidly
development in technology communication field in the
current era of digital technology now a day able to change the
patterns of communication among peoples. If we look at of
classical concepts of interp
ersonal communication was more
emphasizes in face-to-face, while
in the era of technology
now communication mostly done by using the media. The
development of media technology is tremendous rapidly
enrich the forms or types of communication media, one of it
is the Internet.
Internet as a new media has sp
ecial characteristic features
which are convergence and digitalization. Internet is the
result of technological convergence between Information
Technology and Telecommunications. This new media
showed implications in various fields, which are, the
implications in business sector, media’s management,
advertisement, and the social community network including
the behavior of his communication. Development of the new
media that convergent, made the communication process
between people become easier and faster. We can
communicate with people around the world quickly and
directly. Internet with various facilities like, Chat, e-mail,
voice mail, etc has changed the behavior of its consumer.
Communication via the internet does not questioning the
distance and time even the form of communication. No
distance limitation makes the broad nature of the
communication; the Internet can connect millions of people
from various parts of the world
in the same time. Information
from anywhere can quickly be known, and strangely there is
no clear information who was the communicator and who
was the communicant. Each side can be a user, the sender as
well as receivers. In the context of interpersonal
communication, communication can be conducted in person
or using the media. Internet is
expected as the most widely
used media for communication among people other than
mobile phones. Chat, e-mail, voice mail is a facility of the
internet that been used in inter-personal communication.
Classical concept concerned
with face to face for more
effective communication in which effectiveness depends on
Quality of Interpersonal Communication in the Digital Era
Nawiroh Vera
several components, namely; openness, empathy,
supportiveness, positiveness, and
equality. So it can be said
that interpersonal communicati
on with media can reduce the
quality of communications made. Effectiveness
Communication is if every people involved free
communication without barriers sending ideas or notions
appropriate expectations, respectively. Both physical and
psychological barriers in co
mmunication, decreases the
effectiveness of communication.
Quality of communication is not only being seen from the
degree of association but also in social context of
communication. A good relationship will make
communication go smoothly, but in some particular context it
can change into conflict in those interactions. Interpersonal
communication occurs among individual who interact
between one another in certain situation. The interaction can
take place between husba
nd and wife, lovers,
bosses-employee, friends, and so forth. What is more
effective interpersonal comm
unication by face to face or
through the media? In this digital era, that media is referred to
internet or gadget, which b
ecame crucial question in this
study. To answer that, researchers ask individual opinion of
people that deal in communi
cation area about quality of
interpersonal communication in social context, in this case,
the focus are people categori
zed as Y generation and X
generation in Jakarta.
The purpose of this research is as a benchmark for
subsequent studies about the social impact of digital media
for the community.
Interpersonal Communication
It’s difficult to imagine a profession that doesn’t require
you to interact with other people. You likely use
interpersonal communication every day to handle complaints
from a demanding client, to persuade your boss to give you
some time off, or to comfort a friend dealing with a difficult
Interpersonal communication has been defined many ways.
Some scholars define “
Interpersonal communication based
on the situation and number of participants involved
” (Miller,
1978). Using Miller’s defi
nition, Interpersonal
communication occurs between two individuals when they
are close in proximity, able to
provide immediate feedback
and utilize multiple senses. Others define Interpersonal
communication based on the degree of “personalness,” or
perceived quality, of a given in
teraction (Peters, 1974). In
Peter’s view, Interpersonal communication includes
communication that is personal and occurring between
people who are more than acquaintances [1].
Interpersonal communication is the communication
between people. We all communi
cate with each other, every
one of us in his own characteristic way. Interpersonal
communication means communi
cating formal, informal,
verbal and non verbally. Verbal communication refers to oral,
spoken communication we a
ll know. Written communication
enters also in this category. People still write letters, notes, or
send emails. Technology intervenes in any type of
communication because tec
hnology makes communication
develop much quicker. [2].
Interpersonal communication occurs when two or more
people transactionally influence one another. In interpersonal
communication, two or more people have a mutual and
simultaneous effect on one another [3].
Internet is “a global network connecting millions of
computers. More than 100 countries are linked into
exchanges of data, news and opinions. Unlike online services,
which are centrally controlled,
the Internet is
by design. Each Internet computer, called a host, is
independent. Its operators can choose which Internet services
to use and which local services to make available to the
global Internet community. Remarkably, this anarchy by
design works exceedingly well.
There are a variety of ways
to access the Internet. Most onlin
e services, such as America
Online offer access to some Inte
rnet services. It is also
possible to gain access through a
commercial Internet Service
Provider (ISP) [4].
The Internet, or simply the Net, is the publicly available
worldwide system of interconnected computer network that
transmit data by packet switching using a standardized
Internet protocol (IP) and many other protocols. It is made up
of thousands of smaller commercial, academic, and
government networks. It carri
es various information and
services, such as electroni
c mail, online chat and the
interlinked web pages and other documents of the World
Wide Web. Because this is by
far the largest, most extensive
internet (with a small
) in the world, it is simply called
Internet (with a capital
). features of the Internet are ; World
Wide Web (www), E-mail, and Instant Messaging, chat,
mailing list, and each other. [5].
Technology provides many ways of assisting people in
communicating, as well. It can
bridge great distances, as
mentioned earlier, in keeping
people in contact with each
other. Thus, one can see how technology, when used properly,
greatly enhances the communication process among people.
Without telephones and computers, society would consist
solely of whichever people one could reach within a day’s
travel, and we would lack the means to make friends across
the country and around the world (Veronica Bergschneider)
the internet has indeed changed
the way people socialize. [6].
Interpersonal Communication and Technology
Interpersonal communication and technology are linked
together by the simple reason that technology facilitates
communication ways. Technology means cell phones,
computers, internet etc. Co
mmunication has increased a lot
since technology has developed. Nowadays people talk a lot
on the phone, internet is an endless source of knowledge and
people like to talk online, on chat rooms. The internet allows
you to get to know people from all over the world, online, in a
virtual world. Technology has made communication possible
at a global level. [7].
Interpersonal Communication can be sustained also on the
phone. Since technology is so developed, we can talk on the
phone and in the same time see the other person through the

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