I don't know if people are caught up in being "politically correct," are afraid of offending others, don't really care about others, or just don't invest time in reading and learning, etc. Or maybe it is the technological revolution our society has been undergoing that encourages 'sound-bite' instant communication where everything can be preplanned, carefully worded, and (as I like to say) "people are connected afar but disconnected up close." (I think maybe this last point may be partially true, but technology can't be the scapegoat).
I often rant and rave about cellulars and the likes, but this article does a great job concisely breaking down the issue. Definitely some good points to think about and consider as society and technology continues to evolve.
I know one thing I am working on is coming up with quick, brief lines to say to friends and acquaintances in passing that are more substantial and less cliche than the standard "hi," "hello," "how are you?" or for this week the "how were/are finals?" "good luck." I am also trying to think up different responses to these bland statements and questions should one be fired at me. If I say something strange, you who read this post will know why :)