I read an article this weekend about how we interact with technology. One part really struck me because it described something that I do all of the time. Since we have a Google Home Mini here in the apartment, I find myself saying “Please” and “Thank You” whenever some task that I randomly ask for is accomplished. Does this make me crazy? I don’t think so, it just makes me courteous.
I try to be courteous to everyone I meet. It is a sign of respect that I give, and I expect it in return. Courtesy is a nice thing to have, but it also indicates what type of person we are. If courtesy happens without prompting, it gives a positive impression. If courtesy is absent or forced, a more negative perception is given.
Courtesy is a gateway to communication. It relaxes an interaction and usually promotes a feeling of relaxation when it is used. I am not referring to any “enforced” courtesy that some people have to provide as a part of their job. In fact, the “enforced” courtesy usually comes across as fake and is very easy to detect. Genuine courtesy is a pleasure to give and receive, although it is not always reciprocated.
When I use courtesy to my Google Home Mini, I know that it will not respond in the same way towards me. I thank that this is something that AI will correct in the future. As our lives become more dependent on technology, it is vital that we do not become accustomed to just barking out orders and treating everyone and everything around us as nothing more than tools for our own benefit.
A little more courtesy would make this world a better place.