View Full Version : Interpersonal Communication vs. Written Communication

04-29-2007, 06:09 PM
In terms of Interpersonal Communication, as much as 90% of what we relay to one another is done so through non-verbal means. These non-verbal means include eye contact, posture, vocal inflection and etc. This much I understand very well. In fact, I could tell you a true story of the time I learned to make Kimchi from a lady who was Korean and deaf since birth. Additionally, I do not speak Korean nor have I ever learned how to sign. Our interaction that day had no verbal component at all.

Sadly, I do not recall how to make Kimchi. Then again, it is my belief that what was ultimately intended for me to learn that day has been retained.

And now for my If - Then question:

If so much of what we communicate is done so through non-verbal means such as those indicated above (eye contact, posture, vocal inflection...)

Then how do we manage to communicate effectively through the written word when as much as 90% of what is relayed in communication is missing?


04-29-2007, 06:11 PM
Subtle description of body language, but without telling the reader what this body language means - leaving them to decide what the characters are really thinking.

It's what I'd aim for anyway. Describing the actions the reader needs to know about without patronising them. "He covered his mouth as he spoke. He was lying." Blech.

04-29-2007, 06:35 PM
Hi scarletpeaches! :hi:

I see what you are saying however, in the context of our communications with one another on these forums...

I can not literally see you. The only fill in I have for the lack of non-verbal cues are perhaps my assumptions based on your use of punctuation. What I wish to do is discuss and explore the mechanisms by which we communicate with one another through writing (which seemingly lacks all other essential communication components).


04-29-2007, 06:46 PM
Well, why not read about what exactly body language is telling you? Then you could use that in your writing. I remember reading that people scratch their noses when they lie. Apparently there's a lot of scientific evidence to back it up.

There's one professional poker player, quite good, has won numerous tournaments. Whenever he has pocket tens or better, he smiles the tiniest little smile, and his eyes shift back and forth. He reminds me of those cat-clocks they used to sell at Woolworth's. Where the eyes would shift back and forth with the tail/pendulum. Only his expression and actions are far more subtle. I reckon they're easier to see from outside the game(where there are many distractions).

In poker the body language/giveaway is called a tell. I think you're right, people give tells all day long. We don't realize we're doing it. If we did, they wouldn't be tells, which are unconcious. No, if you realize what you're doing, it's missdirection. AKA hollywooding.

Thankyou for pointing this stuff out/reminding me. I better subscribe to this thread so I don't forget(will come in very handy when it's time to cut stuff in my story).

04-29-2007, 07:06 PM
Greetings Nolita :-)

You said:

He reminds me of those cat-clocks they used to sell at Woolworth's. Where the eyes would shift back and forth with the tail/pendulum.

I laughed when I read that because I have seen those clocks before. Your statement triggered a visual impression of a memory for me. In this way, I was able to relate to your communication however, my response was one of gaiety. This does not mean gaiety was what you intended to relay. For all I know, you may hate those clocks. Your communication intention could very well have been one of disgust.


04-29-2007, 07:13 PM
Nope, you read it perfectly. I giggle whenever he gets pocket 10's or better. I always watch when he plays because A. I love poker, and B. he's adorable.