Communication Is: Definition, Types, and Purpose

Communication Is – Humans are social creatures and surely you must have heard that sentence and realized the truth behind that sentence. Why are humans called social creatures? One reason is because humans cannot live alone.

Yup, people are predicted to be the most intelligent creatures on Earth, humans are also not perfect beings who are versatile. To be able to survive on Earth, a human also needs the help of other humans. Whether it’s, direct assistance, or indirectly.

For example, a baby who is only a few months old, they clearly really need other humans, namely parents, to feed him, drink, dress him, bathe him, and put him to sleep.

Never mind babies or small children, even adults also need other people to survive and have a good life. For that good life, adults make friends, relationships, and relationships with the opposite sex. In addition, to start the relationship, we start by communicating.

Communication is something we always do every day. Whether it’s with co-workers, friends, parents, family, girlfriends, or even strangers we accidentally meet in public spaces with different purposes. However, even though we do it every day, what is communication actually? Let’s find out together!

Definition of Communication

Communication at first glance looks simple, but the meaning of the communication itself is actually very diverse. The term communication itself actually comes from the Latin word communicatus which means sharing or the goal of achieving togetherness. Well, the word “communicatus” was then translated into many languages ​​including Indonesian and became the term we usually use to describe conversations between us and other people.

According to the Big Indonesian Dictionary or KBBI, communication is the process of sending and receiving messages between two or more people.

Definition of Communication According to Experts

Apart from the Big Indonesian Dictionary, experts from abroad also provide their own understanding of communication.

Bernard Berelson

A sociologist and behavioral scientist from the United States, Bernard Berelson said that communication is the transmission of information, ideas or emotions using symbols, words, images and other media.

Theodore M. Newcomb

Meanwhile, according to a professor, writer, and social psychologist from the United States named Theodore M. Newcomb said that communication is a transmission of information consisting of discriminatory stimuli from the sender to the recipient.

Gerald R. Miller

Finally, according to Gerald R. Miller who is a United States professor in the field of communication, communication can occur when someone conveys a message to the recipient with the aim of influencing the recipient of the message.

From some of the definitions above, according to the Big Indonesian Dictionary or experts, we can all conclude that communication is the process of transferring news or messages from one person to the recipient with the aim of changing the behavior or decision of the recipient of the message.

In the past, communication could only be in person. But as time goes by, humans are getting more advanced and have succeeded in finding many ways to be able to communicate with other people, whether directly or indirectly.

Starting from telegrams or letters that take a long time for the message to reach its destination. In addition, communication can also be carried out or by telephone, SMS, video call , to communicate through chat facilities in various smartphone applications .

Types of Communication

As previously said, communication does look so simple, but its meaning is quite diverse. Well, it turns out that it’s not just the meaning, communication is also divided into several types, here’s the explanation!

1. Communication Based on the Way of Delivery

The first type of communication is distinguished by the way it is delivered. From this way, communication is divided into 2 types, namely:

Verbal communication

Oral communication is the first type of communication as well as being the type of communication most often we do every day. In this case, communication can be with office colleagues, friends, or strangers that we only meet once. Whether it’s verbal communication by chatting directly face to face or via communication devices such as smartphones .

In addition, oral communication can be said to be communication that is carried out using our mouth or mouth. Usually, the closer a person’s relationship is, the more they will communicate verbally, even when they are busy.

Written communication

If oral communication is communication that is done using the word orally, then written communication is communication that is done using the help of written media.

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In the past, written communication was limited to handwriting and sent in the form of letters. However, along with the times, written communication can now also be done with the help of our gadgets or devices.

The media that can be used for written communication, such as email , chat on WhatsApp, Instagram, and a number of other social media. Even though it’s not really written by hand, still using a number of these applications we will produce text or writing.

2. Communication Based on Purpose and Purpose

Apart from being differentiated based on how it is delivered, communication is also divided into several types based on its intent and purpose. The intent and purpose here are the intent and purpose of the person who initiated the communication, as well as the person to whom he is speaking. Here are several types of speeches based on their intent and purpose.


Speech is an activity that requires someone to speak in front of many people. In contrast to ordinary two-way communication, speech is a one-way conversation because the people who are the opponent only listen and do not participate in giving responses.

Speeches are also delivered in formal language for certain purposes. Not infrequently the person delivering the speech also equips himself with a script so that the speech delivered does not go off track and can run smoothly.

Suggestions or criticism

Suggestion is a suggestion so that something can be better. Meanwhile, criticism is a form of negative response to something. Criticism and suggestions are not foreign terms in the world of work.

Criticism is usually given when someone is doing poorly or below standard. While suggestions are given when the results of someone’s work are considered not good, by providing input so that the next job can be better.


An order is someone’s request for another person to do something. Usually orders are given by people in higher positions to those in lower positions.

For example, bosses to employees, teachers to students, children to parents, or older siblings to younger siblings. Commands are usually spoken in a firm tone which makes them difficult to argue with or refuse.


Lectures are actually similar to speeches, because both are types of one-way communication. However, the difference lies in the topic of conversation or topics to be conveyed. In contrast to speeches, where the topic can be anything, lectures are usually not far from religious topics.

The person giving the lecture is someone who is considered an expert in religion, such as an ustadz, kyai, priest, or religious leader, and the lecture is delivered in a relaxed manner and often ends with a question and answer session between the religious leader and the listeners to the lecture. However, it is different from speeches delivered seems formal and there is rarely a question and answer session.


In simple terms, an interview is a question and answer activity conducted by two or more people. Interviews were conducted to gather more information from sources.

In the world of work, interviews are most often carried out in the process of recruiting new employees. Usually, companies will contact applicants who are deemed to fit the criteria set by the company for a particular position.

In addition to seeing them directly, the interview process is also carried out by the company to find out the potential and abilities possessed by job applicants.

3. Communication Based on the Scope

After communication is based on the purpose and method of delivery, communication is also differentiated based on its scope. Based on this, communication is divided into two, namely internal communication and external communication. Here’s the explanation!

Internal communication

Internal communication is communication that is carried out within a limited scope. For example, communication between members of an organization, someone to their family members, or communication between employees in a company.

When organizational members communicate, they will discuss topics that are only known by their fellow members. The topics discussed are also mostly sensitive or special topics where other people are not allowed to know.

External communication

External communication is the opposite of internal communication. If the previous communication had a limited scope between members, then external communication actually has a very broad scope.

So, external communication is communication made by a person or an organization to the public. The topics covered in this type of communication are also topics that are common and known to everyone.

Purpose of Communication

Everything in this world happens not by chance, but has a purpose behind it. This also applies when we communicate with other people.

When you chat with other people, you must have a certain goal. Starting from important goals such as conveying messages, to trivial goals such as wanting to chat to drive away boredom. Simply put, communication has three basic purposes, here’s an explanation!

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1. So that the message conveyed can be understood

Communication is the process of transferring messages from one person to another. When you communicate with other people, you certainly hope that the message you convey to them can be understood, so that it doesn’t cause any misunderstandings.

To ensure that there are no misunderstandings, a communicator or person delivering a message must have good communication skills and be able to convey the message as clearly as possible.

2. In order to be recognized by others

Although the main goal is to convey a message, communication actually has many purposes, one of which is so that we can be recognized by others.

As you know, humans are social creatures who always need other people beside them. Therefore, to get a friend or colleague, you need to start interacting with them.

One form of interaction is to communicate. By starting communication, people will know you and not think of you as an unknown stranger.

3. To be accepted by people or the environment

Not only to be known by other people, communication is also done so that we can be accepted by other people, both their existence and the ideas you convey.

However, again, for this, you must have good communication so that people can also get a good impression and understand what you are conveying to them.

Communication Function Is

Besides having a purpose, communication also has a function. Actually there are many communication functions, and here are some of them:

1. As a Tool to Control Something or Someone

The first function of communication is to control something or someone so they don’t get off track. For example, teachers who warn their students to tidy up their uniforms or cut their hair so that it doesn’t get too long and violate school rules.

Another example is a boss who warns his employees not to play gadgets too often while working or being absent too much because it will interfere with the work of other employees as well.

These two examples show that communication can be used to control someone. Usually this one function is carried out by people who have positions or older ages to those who are younger. This happens when a person who is younger or more junior does something that violates the rules, so communication is carried out so that he does not commit another violation afterwards.

On the negative side, the communication function is also often abused by irresponsible people just to get what they want by using other people who are weaker than themselves.

2. To Motivate

Besides being able to use communication as a tool for control, we can also use communication to save someone from feelings of hopelessness that often arise in difficult times.

By word of mouth or smartphone , we can give words of encouragement, advice, or any sentence that makes someone who is down can get back up.

At first glance, the words we say may sound trivial even to our own ears. However, a different effect will be felt by those who listen to it.

Believe it or not, a sentence that sounds trivial to you, can save someone from the worst situation, and that means a lot.

3. As a medium for expressing the contents of the heart

The human heart is very clever in recognizing various emotions. But unfortunately, the heart cannot speak, so to convey what is felt by the heart, we need communication, both orally and in writing.

With communication, we can express feelings without the need to keep them to ourselves. You can express what you feel to the people closest to you. As for the feelings or contents of the heart that are expressed, such as anger, annoyance, disappointment, sadness, joy, happiness, even despair.

By communicating with those closest to you, these feelings won’t disappear right away, but at least you will feel much better than before expressing them.

4. As a Tool for Finding and Providing Information

Sometimes we need certain information to carry out various activities. To get this information, you sometimes have to communicate with other people, although you can indeed find a lot of information on the internet.

However, sometimes there is important information whose nature is only known by certain people. For example, you are on vacation to a city that you are visiting for the first time and want to visit a certain tourist destination. Therefore, you at least need to ask local residents for directions to these tourist destinations.

Communication is indeed a simple activity, but actually this is an important thing to do. Without communication, we will experience many difficulties. Without communication, you will have no friends, boyfriend or life partner. Without communication, you will often get lost, will experience lots of difficulties. More than that, without communication, your life will be many times more difficult than it should be.

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