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All communication is miscommunication - Her Most Regal Majesty, the Queen of Snark
void where prohibited, except by law
sesquipedality
sesquipedality
All communication is miscommunication
No-one ever really understands what you say to them. Your thoughts are filtered through your own words which are an imperfect translation of your thoughts. The brains of those who listen to your words then interpret those words through the filter of their own understanding. Geeks like me often think that if only they can express a concept sufficiently precisely that their words will somehow become impossible to misinterpret, but in truth people's understanding of what you say will always be filtered through their own emotional and mental landscape.

All communication is miscommunication.

This is why it's sensible to concentrate the effort of trying to communicate upon people you like and respect. And also to know when more words are most likely to lead to further miscommunication and therefore to know when to stop speaking to avoid compounding it. The problem is that silence itself is a message particularly prone to misinterpretation. It's an odd universe we live in, isn't it?
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Comments
keirf From: keirf Date: October 30th, 2007 08:14 am (UTC) (Link)
It's an odd universe we live in, isn't it?

Not really. We just tend to notice the weird bits because they stand out more. There's lots to the universe that is entirely logical and sensible, but because of that it's bland and we overlook it.
secretrebel From: secretrebel Date: October 30th, 2007 11:40 am (UTC) (Link)
There are qualities of silence. My father was once told (while at school) that he had a "very aggressive silence". But here are also calm silences, thoughtful silences, comfortable silences. I don't think silence is more prone to miscommunication than other forms of communication - I think the real rpoblem is that people don't pick up on the whole framework of communication, the non-verbal cues, the unspoken messages, the tenor, register and mode of the communication involved.

Some of the best communication comes when you don't need to filter. "How can I know what I think till I see what I say" is very true of me. The less I have to use my colunking old brain before speaking the better.
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