Written Communication

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What is Written Communication?

Written communication is one that is established through words or any other written code. The sender and receiver must share knowledge of the code in question, for communication to be effective.

In this kind of communication, the sender writes while the receiver reads. Always, as a channel, there will be a physical device, which can be a paper or a computer screen or even a wall.

The oldest written communication was through pictograms: they are signs or drawings that represent a concept or idea.

Characteristics of written communication

- It's not simultaneous: The message isn't received as it occurs as it happens in a conversation in which while the sender speaks, the receiver listens. It's clear that the time varies according to the type of communication: in a chat that gap is much more limited in a printed newspaper.
- Stay in time: Unlike the oral message, the writing manages to perpetuate itself. Words aren't "carried away by the wind."
- You must respect rules: The message must adapt to grammar or spelling rules so that the content makes sense and is effective.
- Distances aren't an impediment: Unlike a face-to-face conversation, written messages can go around the world. Distances aren't a problem for them.
- The messages are planned: The issuer must plan, no matter how minimal the communication, how he will formulate the content so that it has cohesion and coherence.

Types and examples of written communication

Written communications can be personal or designed for a mass audience. In addition, they can have different objectives such as informing, convincing or entertaining.

Some examples of written communication can be the following:

- Brochures or flyers: Through them messages related to propaganda or advertising are communicated. In general, they seek to convince the recipient of something. They are usually distributed in public spaces and have little text. In addition, they usually have resources to make them attractive to reading: various colors, different types of typography, images, bold text.
- Letters: The message is written on a piece of paper that is placed in an envelope for the mail to reach its destination. Unlike brochures, they are personalized messages and, depending on the relationship between the sender and the receiver, there are more or less formalities.
- Emails: They are the modern version of the letters, which are sent through the web, they protect privacy and are personalized. The advantage is that, unlike letters, they allow you to attach files that by means of an envelope could be much more expensive and complicated. Its content, like that of the letters, can be the most varied: personal, work, commercial, informative.
- Newspapers and magazines: Its contents are usually linked to current events, are written by journalists and are printed from time to time. In general, they cover specific topics, so readers buy them according to their interests. Once read, these messages are discarded, unless they are part of a collection. Its function is to inform or entertain the public.
- Books: Unlike newspapers or magazines, they don't have a periodicity and aren't intended to be discarded. They contain the most varied genres and, with few exceptions, they don't lose validity. The main function of books is to entertain and spread knowledge.
- Internet and all its variants: Beyond e-mail, with the Internet came an incalculable series of written media: from web portals to social networks such as WhatsApp or Twitter. From the network of networks, written words arrive much faster, in a more massive and economical way. For some, it's a key advance in the democratization of knowledge.

Importance of written communication

Written communication represents a before and after for humanity. Here are some keys that allow us to elucidate its importance:

- It allows the diffusion of knowledge. With the writing and publication of content of all kinds, knowledge is no longer in the hands of a few. Written communication broke the monopoly of information.
- Time is no longer an obstacle. Messages can be stored and spread from generation to generation. They are no longer limited to one stage in history.
- The distances are broken. As with time, distances are no longer an impediment to the diffusion of knowledge.
- It helps personal ties. Letters first and then emails, chats or social networks have helped people to keep in touch or even to rebuild links that the passage of time and distance had broken.
- Enrich the culture. Thanks to written communication, new types of expression and genres emerged, ranging from the novel to poetry, through stories and plays.

Elements of written communication

Among the elements that make up writing, three can be mentioned:

- Structure: As its name indicates, it's the way in which the sender orders or structures what he wants to communicate. It can be in paragraphs, chapters, dialogues, items, to give some examples.
- Style: It's the way you write the content in question. It can be formal or informal, personal or impersonal.
- Content: It's what you want to communicate. It can be knowledge, the qualities of a product that you want to sell, a fictional story, among many others.

Advantages of written communication

On a social level, written communication also brought certain advantages:

- Allows organization: Through writing, laws and codes that structure and control a society can be regulated.
- Encourage reflection: Before writing, the person must think about what they want to communicate.
- They decrease the distortion: Writing limits the levels of interpretation and manipulation that an intermediary can introduce.

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