Sven Birkerts wrote this in the mid-1990's.
The last two words in my book are "Refuse it." I don't mean that this is necessarily a realistic mass proposal. I mean that speaking subjectively, for myself, this is what my heart tells me to do…In living my own life, what seems most important to me is focus, a lack of distraction -- an environment that engenders a sustained and growing awareness of place, and face-to-face interaction with other people. I've deemed these to be the primary integers of building and sustaining this self. I see this whole breaking wave, this incursion of technologies, as being in so many ways designed to pull me from that center of focus. To give you a simple example: I am sitting in the living room playing with my son. There is an envelope of silence. I am focused. The phone rings. I am brought out. When I sit down again, the envelope has been broken. I am distracted. I am no longer in that moment. I have very nineteenth-century, romantic views of the self and what it can accomplish and be. I don't have a computer. I work on a typewriter. I don't do e-mail. It's enough for me to deal with mail. Mail itself almost feels like too much. I wish there were less of it and I could go about the business of living as an entity in my narrowed environment…But what I see happening instead is our wholesale wiring. And what the wires carry is not the stuff of the soul. I might feel differently if that was what they were transmitting. But it's not. It is data. The supreme capability that this particular chip-driven silicon technology has is to transfer binary units of information. And therefore, as it takes over the world, it privileges those units of information. When everyone is wired and humming, most of what will be going through those wires is that sort of information. If it were soul-data, that might be a different thing, but soul-data doesn't travel through the wires.
Again, I encourage you to read the whole conversation. I feel it in my heart, which says yes, to me, that yes, we can have soul communication online and we also need to speak in person, the spread eye to eye. Again, this conversation from the mid-1990's is fascinating.