Express Your Love? Email, Not Leave Voicemail

Now this may shock you, as it did me.  When you're in love, experts say, it's better to email than to leave a voicemail.


According to a new research study from Indiana University, people might be more successful in finding love if they get an email rather than a message.

The research suggests that, in this digital age, an email can be more effective in expressing romantic feelings than leaving a voicemail message, reports.

Previous research and conventional wisdom suggested the opposite, that a voicemail message is a more intimate way to connect with others, but that may not be true, particularly among millennials.
“The bottom line is that email is much better when you want to convey some information that you want someone to think about,” says one of the authors, Alan R. Dennis, the John T. Chambers Chair of Internet Systems in IU’s Kelley School of Business.

 Now keep in mind -- you can't take things back on email.  It's always there, for now and ever.  A voicemail can be erased. 

I guess I'm lucky.  My husband is still hoping someone can teach him "the computer."  I never email him.  (Of course, I don't call him much, either.  We have this weird mutual affection without connection thing.)

Although voicemail, email and texting are part of everyday life, very little is known about how their characteristics influence and distort communication in work and personal settings.

In the study of 72 college-age people, researchers found that people who sent romantic emails were more emotionally aroused and used stronger and more thoughtful language than those who left voicemails.

 “When writing romantic emails, senders consciously or subconsciously added more positive content to their messages, perhaps to compensate for the medium’s inability to convey vocal tone,” they wrote in the paper.

“Email enables senders to modify the content as messages are composed to ensure they are crafted to the needs of the situation. Voicemail lacks this feature,” they add. “A sender records a voicemail in a single take, and it can be sent or discarded and re-recorded, but not edited. Thus, senders engage with email messages longer and may think about the task more deeply than when leaving voicemails. This extra processing may increase arousal.”

The jury is still out on that, for me.  But maybe I should start emailing my husband.  Once he figures out how to open one.   


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