Human beings are hardwired for in-person, face-to-face communication, with a vast quantity of information communicated nonverbally through subtle cues of posture, facial expression, and tone of voice. Shared history, assumptions, and social identity also ensure mutual understanding. Active listening, at its best, is the art of leveraging these cues and common background to create a safe space for drawing out information that may be both disconfirming and emotionally charged. But how does this play out in virtual communication?

While technology has in some ways made communication easy and instantaneous, it has also stripped communication of some of its richness and context. This presents a special set ...

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