To The Editor,
Ms. Sproule’s recent editorial weighing the pros and cons of remote working and learning (“The case for remote work, study…” 26 April 2023) was, in my opinion, first rate. There is little doubt that Ms. Sproule favours a return to the workplace and the classroom, and so do I.
In addition to the arguments that she makes about the consequences of remote working and learning (I especially liked her reference to “staring at screens”), there is another one (of many) that I would like mention — the lack of sociability. Interacting with real people is simply wonderful. Generally, meaningful conversations can be had, body language can be read, and we don’t feel so alone.
I taught an online course two years ago, and I returned to the lecture hall this past year. The differences between the two years were night and day. The in-person students were more engaged than the on-line ones, and we could discuss ideas and questions much more effectively than we could through screen interaction and chats.
That was a very nice editorial, Ms. Sproule. Thank you for spurring me to think about one of the most important aspects of being human; that is, the need for human contact.