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Essay on “The Role of International Communication and Post, Telegraph and Telephone” Complete Essay for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

The Role of International Communication and Post, Telegraph and Telephone


International communication remains an indispensable segment of the communication network in both developed and developing countries. There are innumerable ways and channels of interpersonal communication in all societies, using symbols, languages and other modes of human expression. In the contemporary world, interpersonal communication is sup-ported or made easier by modern media, and various services offered by telecommunications. The largest organised system for delivery of point-to-point messages is the postal system. Postal services had their beginnings thousands of years ago. Today, they represent a vital network in each society.

While postal services are well-established in developed countries, they continue to be inadequate in almost all developing countries, partly because of the remoteness of millions of villages and the poor quality of road and rail networks. There are still many centres of population which have no post office. Progress in this field could be a factor for social cohesion, and contribute to the infrastructure of commerce and industry. Post offices can also serve a useful purpose as government information centres, and as focal points for activity in the fields of development and public health.

A surprising trend in recent decades has been the deterioration of postal services in certain developed countries. One reason is that the excellent services of the past depended on lavish use of man-power. Another reason is that communication authorities now prefer to invest in improvement of the telephone system, which is profitable, rather than on maintenance of the postal system, which is not; hence, the deterioration of postal services between persons, nations and continents. The faster the aeroplanes, it seems, the slower the post. This deterioration often causes serious disruptions in individual and commercial communication. There are grounds for thinking, indeed, that the decline in the habit of letter writing has been a factor in reducing the ability of many people to express themselves in a literate manner, and this represents a cultural loss.

The second largest organised interpersonal communication network is the worldwide telephone system. It has been rightly said that the telephone is a sophisticated extension and amplifier of traditional oral communication. No other media can match the telephone for direct, spontaneous dialogue. There are, at present, some 400 million telephones in the world, an increase of about 1,000 per cent since 1945. Virtually all nations are linked together, many by direct dialling systems, in the international web, the largest integrated machine ever built.

Group and Local Media : To achieve group cohesion, to mobilize local resources, and to solve problems affecting smaller or large groups, communication is necessary, and various means are utilized. Communication at this level is increasing in both developing and developed countries. Frequently, local communication is assisted by the mass media, which communicates new facilities, such as radio stations which are financed by a central organisation, and managed locally. But communities and individuals have also taken the initiative in creating their own means of communication. These means cover a wide range of media from local and well newspapers, mimeographed leaflets, photos, posters, and dazibaos, local radios and itinerant loudspeakers, to pamphlets, slides, tape recorders, exhibitions, experimentation, local fairs, film and music festivals, puppet shows, similar devices and means.

The Mass Media : Since the invention of the printing press and, in more recent times, of multitude of communication forms including telegraph, telephone, telex, camera and film, photograph, radio and television, the world has been truly transformed. Messages of all kinds are continuously transmitted to a vast number of recipients. The advent of the mass media and their presence in our daily life has been one of the major features of the contemporary world.

Quantitatively, the expansion of communication in recent decades has been steady and uninterrupted, in keeping with demographic, educational, social and political trends. It is certainly difficult to estimate the outcome of this rapid growth in information and entertainment, coupled with the efforts of an ever-growing audience to assimilate it. Most striking of all is the size of the audience that the media now reach around the world. The number of people untouched by the mass media has dramatically decreased in only 25 years. At the present rate of progress, almost everyone everywhere will be its audience in a matter of decades.

The geographical extension is even more significant in that it means the mass media are no longer an exclusive prerogative of urban populations. Their expansion in practically all countries and to wide rural areas, brings within their reach not only regional centres and national capitals, but remote corners of the world as well This wider coverage has produced another major change the nature of the messages transmitted, particularly in radio and the press. The expansion of various sectors of communication, and more particularly of mass media, increases the importance and stimulates the expansion of agencies, which supply and circulate news to newspapers and broadcasters, and to other specialised consumers, the public in general getting news in an indirect way.

Books are an irreplaceable storehouse of knowledge and of cultural values. This century has seen a great and still accelerating in-crease in book production, which can be ascribed to the growth in the absolute number of literates, advances in education, the arrival of paperbacks, improvements in production and distribution techniques, and the spread of libraries and travelling libraries even to remote places. In all regions of the world, radio is the most ubiquitous of the mass media. Transmission capacity has more than tripled in the last quarter century.

No other medium now has the potential to reach so many people so efficiently, for information, educational, cultural and entertainment purposes. Radio can be used easily and economically to reach outlying regions, and for communication in the many vernacular—often unwritten—languages existing in developing countries. Almost all countries have a certain capacity to produce radio programmes in line with their political needs, cultural patterns and basic values. Radio is perhaps today the least trans nationalised communication medium, both in terms of ownership and programme flows. Despite these advantages, radio is, to an extent limited as an international medium of communication because of language and technical barriers, except in the field of music where it promotes a universal language. Music needs no interpreter, and radio has achieved a great deal in preserving, encouraging and popularizing the music of various countries.

Satellites : The growth of planetary satellite communication has been spectacular. More than 33 communication satellite raw systems of national, regional or international scope are now functioning, or are under construction in the world. A score more are on the ding board. They can be divided into four categories by use:

(a) International satellite systems. Intelsat and Inter-sputnik are the Only systems of this type existing today. The Intelsat system Provides direct satellite communication for more than immateriality countries operating over  the  three oceans. Although primarily a domestic system, Inter-sputnik is also used by socialist and some other countries.

(b) Domestic and regional satellite systems. The USSR’s Moinia and Ecran, Canada’s Anik, India’s Insat, Indonesia’s Palapa and the USA’s Wester, Comstar and RCA are operational examples. The West European, Arab and Nordic country regions are likely to be the next to possess operational systems.

(c) Marine and aeronautical satellite systems. Examples of these mobile communication satellites include the Marisat system for ships at sea, Aerosat (in the planning stage) for commercial aircraft use, and the European Space Agency’s Marecs (a marine satellite spin-off).

(d) Military satellite systems.

Computers : Last but not the least among contemporary developments, informatics has advanced at a speed not anticipated even by those working in the field. The pulsed transmission of in-formation (coded binary, or digital, information) has progressively extended the scope of the computer systems initially installed in centralized service of large organisations. This was first affected by earth links (co-axial cables and radio links), and later by satellite linkage around the earth. This evolution has taken different forms: multiple terminals making possible various data-processing services networks (data bases, customized data-processing, storage and filing). Thus computer networks and/or systems have entered the sphere of communication. However, three basic functions constantly recur, and are now becoming increasingly “distributed”: storage (memory, arithmetical and logical operational units (processing), peripheral input/output units (access). It is the latter which make communication between the user and the computer system possible. Constant improvements are being made in cost, performance, reliability and the size of computer hardware, as well as in the diversification of the capacities and the ways in which they may be used. Indeed, self-contained mini-systems are becoming increasingly numerous.

Visual Expression: Visual communication is a basic form of expression which this century has been dramatically vitalised by the invention of moving images carried by the cinema or television screen. Nevertheless, despite the instant appeal of such images, the older static picture has lost none of its importance, as the frequent and widespread use of wall sheets, posters, hoardings, illustrations and comic strips and “picture novels” testifies.

Either handwritten or printed, often illustrated, a traditional example of a simple means of communication between the producer of goods or ideas and the potential consumer, it fulfils a multiple function : advertising, informing, exhorting, persuading. Posters have also been a favoured communication medium at particular moments in history, such as the First World War, the Mexican revolution, the October revolution in the USSR, the student movements in the 1960’s, and during various periods of change in China. In a large number of countries (like Brazil, Switzerland, Finland, Hungary, Sweden, Italy—to mention only a few noted for their excellence in graphic design) posters have a recognised impact for particular social purposes (promoting solidarity, children’s welfare, energy saving, etc.).

Modern comic strips (they have certainly ceased to be solely or predominantly ‘comic’, although the old name is still used) are soaring in popularity in many countries today, perhaps not only due to their entertainment value but because their contents have diversified to include material with sociological undertones, and because production techniques have ensured a more attractive appearance.

New Information Technology :

Two technological breakthroughs : telematics and micro-informatics, open up a whole new world of applications in the era of mass diffusion of information. But they also open up something even more, novel—the year of informatization of communication. Micro-computers had already made an impact in highly developed countries, but they now offer opportunities to developing countries too. The other trend, the merging of computing and telecommunication (the interlinking of computers by telecommunication or telematics also offers huge possibilities. Until quite recently, there was relatively little connection between them; any use of one technology by the other was mainly incidental. The present trend is leading to closer connections between computing technology and data communication facilities, constituting the converging complex of technologies called informatics.

Since the advent of the digital computer, there are few human activities which are not in some way connected with, influenced by, or involved directly in electronic data processing. This has produced what is called the “information explosion”, enormously increasing the quality of data which can be stored, processed, analysed and transmitted. The links between computers and telecommunication systems have given an additional dimension and an even more global significance to mankind’s ability to handle and use data. This phenomenon is increasingly found in all countries, including many technologically less developed.

Although all data storing and processing has influenced many fields, its utilization in scientific work is particularly significant Since access to the store of scientific and technical information and data presents a particular difficulty for developing countries, if only for its staggering quantity, they are especially interested in inter-national and regional information systems. Initiatives to establish integrated information networks at the national and international levels, in many cases involving computerized data banks, are flourishing. Cooperative efforts within the United Nations system (I0B, IATFIS), and the UNISIST programme of UNESCO, are helping provide a framework for effective world-wide access to information; they include fully operational networks, such as the International Information System for the Agricultural Sciences and Technology (AGRIS) and the International Nuclear Information System (INIS), and planned and developing systems in many fields, including development sciences (DEVISIS) and science and technology policy information (SPINES).


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