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ENGL 102- Physical Vs. Digital Communication

Sep 14, 2023

Listed below are some topics for your research paper.

  1. Defining the American Dream
  2. The changes to the academic process due to Covid-19
  3. Traits that make an influential person
  4. Physical vs. digital communications
  5. The Youth Mental Health Crisis

Pick one of them


Physical Vs. Digital Communication


Communication is one of the vital characteristics of living beings. People can express their thoughts and talk to one another; that is how communication happens. Communication is also critical in organization. Without communication, the whole society would collapse. For example, if there is no proper communication between a professor and a student, no one would be able to understand each other’s thoughts, and a huge communication gap will be created. In the same way, if it is assumed that in a company, the employer is not communicating with its other employees about official matters, then also there would be no proper progress in work. Therefore, communication is one of the prime elements of the survival of a being, an organization, and etc.

Thus, the act of communication can be defined as the sharing of information among group or between two individuals. When the conveyed information is understood, appropriate feedback is given to the conveyer (Communication Meaning of Communication). There are broadly two types of communication in today’s world, “physical communication” and “digital communication”. The inter-relationship between the two types of communication will be studied and reflected on this paper. The relationship and the contrast between both the form of communication will be studied in detail in this paper.

Types of Communication:

Types of communication considered for this research are Physical communication and digital communication.

Physical communication includes the posture of our body while speaking, maintaining eye contact, suitable facial expressions, and maintaining human contact through human touch. This type of communication involves lots of gestures and both verbal and non-verbal attributes. Whatever communication takes place in person can be classified as physical communication. Digital Communication is that communication in which an organization’s communicational efforts are all based online. Nowadays, most of the organizations communicate through digital mediums, which are always online. Due to the massive digital presence, the level of mechanical thinking has also increased (Doyle).

Types of physical communication

The three types of physical communication are:

Body Language: Body language is one of the ways in which physical communication can be established. For example, if a stage performer walks up to the stage and has a slouched demeanor, a smile, and a lack of grace; it is communicated through that body language that the performer has low-confidence. Similarly, suppose a comedian, while entertaining the audience, has an upright posture, a straight back, and a joyful face; it communicates to the audience the fact that the comedian is indeed confident, and rightly so. Therefore, body language becomes extremely important.

Nonverbal gestures: Nonverbal gestures include facial expressions, eye contact, signs, gestures, and touch. This is important for people who are not deaf, as well as people who are deaf. Through facial expressions, massive communication can be done. An individual who is a good communicator needs to express his point of view in a much better light. Performing arts also are heavily dependent on facial expression. Maintaining eye contact is a form of courtesy.

Typically, one should maintain eye contact with whom they are communicating. Or else it is considered to be rude.

Signs and gestures also are incredibly significant for physical communication. Especially people who are deaf or partially deaf use this type of communication in their daily life. Blind people, or deaf-blinded people, opt for touch as the prime type of physical communication. It is through touch that these people learn braille and also learns alphabets. 

Verbal Communication: This type of communication is the most prevalent. Speaking coherent words making a sentence giving meaning, and making sense of the ideas one thinks is verbal communication. When two individuals communicate verbally, they can hear each other speak, thus understanding what the other individual means and then giving suitable feedback.

Types of digital communication:

The three types of digital communications are:

Online Chatting: In this modern world, technology has given rise to online platforms for digital communication. A few of these online platforms are “WhatsApp,” “Instagram,” “Facebook,” etc online chatting has become a prevalent form of digital communication. It is readily available and has no cost-effect; therefore, more and more people are indulging in online chatting.

Electronic Mail: Official sectors typically communicate digitally through electronic mail or emails. Electronic mail is composed and sent online to the recipient digitally. It is similar to chatting, but more complex in its design. Online chatting can be assumed to be more casual, whereas electronic mail is both formal and informal. Electronic mail is nothing but letters written and sent in the digital world.

Video calls and conferences: Technology has been developed further, and video calls and conferences have become legitimate digital communication mediums. This type of communication happens through the help of a camera which makes the communicators visible to each other as well as audible in real-time. Communications through video calls and conferences are a relatively new creation and, thus, are enjoyed widely. The fact that communicators are able to see and witness each other during communication also makes communication way more straightforward and understandable.  

Merits of physical communication

Physical communication is believed to consume the least time, not to mention that it is also simpler to understand, least expensive, and more direct. It is more effective because physical communication happens in person directly and not through any other medium. An individual does not have to wait for feedback for a long time because the recipient of the information gives immediate feedback.


In a hypothetical situation, a physically impaired patient goes to a doctor for knee and back problems. After the doctor checked the patient in the hospital in person, he felt a lump of mass at the side of his knee cap. The doctor after further evaluation of the patient prescribes medicines and asks the patient to test the mass and find out whether it is benign or fatal. The doctor even demonstrated a few physical exercises for physiotherapy of the patient relaxing his back. The patient clarified all his doubts about the posture of the exercises. Physical communication helped the doctor and the patient communicate with each other in a much better light.


If for instance, the patient would have visited the doctor on any online platform, the doctor would have missed the mass situated beside the patient’s knee cap. Sometimes patients are not able to separately tell everything wrong with their bodies. Doctors like detectives have to find out the problems. Also, physical exercises are important in physiotherapy. If it is not done in person and the postures of the exercises remain wrong, it can prove to have severe consequences for the patient. Therefore, physical communication is a much better way of communicating in this instance.

Demerits of physical communication

Physical communication also has certain demerits or challenges. Individuals attain immediate feedback, but as they are spontaneous responses, they might need to be thought through properly. The responses might be deficient in some way. Communication needs to be short and crisp so that the person in front of another individual does not lose the train of thought. Thus, it is not suitable for long messages. Due to barriers in the personal sphere, societal sphere, etc., physical communication stays unsuitable at these times.


In a hypothetical situation, a brawl has taken place in a stadium. Everyone is running, screaming, fighting, and panicking. In the middle of this, a seven-year-old boy was lost and found by a gatekeeper. The gatekeeper took the boy to the nearest sheriff’s location. The gatekeeper, as well as the boy, were panic-stricken and disoriented by the violence. When the sheriff asked about the phone number of the boy’s parents, he could not answer. When the gatekeeper asked about the locality of the boy’s place, he could only manage to tell his nearest landmark, which was a high school. However, the gatekeeper misheard the name of the landmark, and the search for his parents was delayed.


The challenges of physical communication are powerfully displayed in this hypothesis. Limited ability to make sense of a situation when panic-stricken is quite normal. However, when technically judged, physical communication is of significantly lesser use in these situations for people who are not trained. Not being able to understand what is being communicated physically gives rise to a severe communication gap. In this case, it made the possibility of a reunion between the boy and his family less.

Merits of digital communication

Evolution has given the world technology, and the world has furthered it tenfold. Today, the miles-apart hemispheres of the world do not seem that far from each other. The reason for that is globalization, which happened mainly because of digital communication. Today a person sitting in Europe can, within a minute, be connected to a person in America. Online platforms are cost effective and are also user-friendly. Applications of online chatting platforms can be downloaded on mobile phones and laptops and can be carried. Wireless internet connection has even made online calls, chat, and video calls an even better way of communicating, making digital communication very popular in every age group. This also should be mentioned that during

COVID-19, digital communication saved everyone in every sphere.


In this hypothetical situation, a final-year law student has gone on a family vacation to Greece. He goes to school in Arkansas. While on the trip, he gets to know from an email from his professor that the whole class has to submit an eight-page research paper on recent amendments within three days. Fortunately, he was carrying his phone and laptop, where he could access all of his study materials. He even got better insights into the assignment through online chatting with his friends. He was sad that he had to sit back at the hotel and finish his assignment at the cost of an evening in Greece but he was thankful for digital communications, which made it possible for him to complete his work and submit it on time. 


Digital communication has become a saving grace for students time and again. The student from the hypothetical situation was saved because of his professor’s electronic mail and the insights his friends gave him through digital communications. Also, it should be noted that the distance between the locations was not even a factor because of digital communication. It has brought the world even closer.

Demerits of digital communication

Digital communication might be bliss to the busy generation, but it also works as a curse. This type of communication always takes place digitally, which means that in this open space, communications become less secure. More interference happens, and even the networks also get more jammed. As this is an online medium, thus, transmission might also be slow due to jamming. Many security breaches take place and seriously harm individuals by compromising their personal details. Hacking is also another severe occurrence that digital communication is prone to. Even corporate sectors are not safe from these. Hence, digital communication is not always reliable (Vazhakkat).


In this hypothetical instance, a company’s trade secret was managed by a third-party contractor through emails. Suddenly the market got to know much about the trade secret, and later it was revealed that the company’s official email ID had been hacked. Years and years of building a company and maintaining trade secrets within a moment diminished to nothingness.


In this instance, the company, as most corporate organizations do, was managing their official works, as well as trade secrets through electronic mail, a viable medium of digital communication. As online activities are prone to security breaches and hacking, thus, this company, too, got preyed on. This proved that anyone is susceptible to being vulnerable online in digital communication.


In this research paper, I will expound on Physical vs. Digital Communication. Yet in order to conclude on the premise of taking the influence of both the forms of communication, which has their boons and curses. Moreover, physical communication mainly includes communicating physically with each other. On the other hand, digital communication these days has several benefits to the people that actually help the society to get together because digital communication is far faster and yet, helps society to be active in social media, through websites, in the forms of emails and even texts. These days the generation mainly expects to connect through digital platforms rather than communicating physically. Alternatively, physical communication is equally essential for society. This makes humans communicate physically with each other. While digital communication makes humans more progressive. In this research paper, I have assumed that digital communication’s consequences are direr as compared to physical communication. Thus, physical communication is a better choice for communicating than human beings eager to select digital communication over physical communication.

Works Cited

9vu8XmXKrt0OIM0yPafG5TQc&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=true. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Doyle, Leslie. “What Is Digital Communication and Why Is It Important?” Bachelor’s Degree Completion, 25 Jan. 2019,

face-to-face      interactions      are      limited.”      New      Media      &       Society,              2021, Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Lee, Edward A., and David G. Messerschmitt. Digital Communication. Google Books, Springer

Nguyen, Minh, et al. “Staying connected while physically apart: Digital communication when

Science                      &                    Business                     Media,            6                      Dec.                2012,     hl=en&lr=&id=GjTwCAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PR13&dq=types+of+digital+communication& ots=DK4xcjxSUK&sig=2M-

Vazhakkat, Swetha. “Advantages and Disadvantages of Wireless Communication.” GeeksforGeeks, 20 Apr. 2020, “Advantages and Disadvantages of Verbal and Non-Verbal Communication We Assure.”,

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