Thursday, August 11, 2011

My Guide To Text Messaging Essentials. OMG.

Patience is not one of my virtues.  Maybe this is a product of being part of the "me!"  "Now!" Generation, but I love instant gratification.  But since I existed in the dinosaur times before cell phones, text messages confuse the bajesus outa me.  When I first got a cell phone, I didn't realize I was getting text messages for about a year after I got it.  Who knew that "mailbox" icon meant something?   Oops. 

Communication Rules Used To Be Simple 
1) Don't call friends after 9:30 PM.
2) Say "hello, this is Margot, is blah blah blah there please"
3) If someone calls you, call them back.  If someone gives you a gift, write a freaking thank you note.

Which brings me to the question of the day:  What's ok in the text message world? 

Is it ever ok to not respond?  Is it ok to get annoyed when someone takes a day to write back?  And then send them a message that says "Why the (#@)(#&@ didn't you reply to my text?"  My mom never taught me these rules.  And sadly, she never taught my ex boyfriends these rules either. Likely because my mom has never sent a text message in her life.  So I'm gonna have to fend for myself here.

Unusual Stuff
A friend:  "I just got in a car accident" = CALL BACK ASAP (AND TEXT BACK IF CALL NOT RECEIVED)
Random creepy dude at 2 AM:  "What are you up to?"  or "Thinking of you" = IGNORE IGNORE!
Good for Text Messaging?  Probably not, but keeps life interesting.  

Long Conversations?
Because I'm a texting curmudgeon, I think having a long conversation via text message is silly.  If you want to discuss long details of something, unless you're Stephen Hawking or we're at work, just pick up the phone and call me.  I can talk like 60 words a minute.  That's faster than can I text.  And I bet it's faster than you can text too.
Good For Text Messaging?  Not really.

Figuring out location or logistics?
Love it.  Unless it gets complicated.
Good for Text Messaging? Abso-freakinglutely

Mass Texts?
These are usually either religious / motivational, fundraising, or to wish you a "Merry Christmas!".  I have no idea what the etiquette is when clearly someone texted their entire phonebook.  Maybe to SPAM your whole phonebook too.  Pay it forward.
Good For Text Messaging?  Unless it's a Holiday wish, you're probably annoying your friends.

Response Time?
This is a tricky one.  I feel in most instances, a response within a couple hours is the way to go.  But I'm also guilty of responding to people a day or two later.  It's easy to see a text and then forget about it.  But most people have their phones on them all the time.  And replying takes like two seconds.  So if you regularly reply to me 5 days later, you are communicating that I am the world's lowest priority to you.   Or that you're a time traveler and it's hard for you to keep these things straight.

Intended For Someone Else:
Probably best to tell them they got the wrong number.  Although I've always been tempted to play along and see how long the person takes to figure out they texted the wrong person...

Agree or Disagree with mah texting policies?  
Anything text related you want to vent about?  
What's the most ridiculous message you remember getting? 


  1. Haha so great...and I'd like to add to #4 of communications always RSVP when you get an invitation in the mail, rsvp a "yes" or a "no" simple right? :)

  2. I got a text with someone telling me that they were going to beat me up. It took me several texts to explain that I was not male and I was not who they were looking for. Never a dull moment.

  3. This cracked me up. I'm from even deeper in the dino days than you, but I do like texting. It's lower-pressure somehow. That said, I think it does need some basic etiquette established. And people shouldn't expect anyone to have his/her phone on all the damn time. If I'm late responding, it's because my phone is mostly (as they say in airplanes) "in the off position."

  4. @Erika
    Totally agree with you but I have to be honest (lest people who know me in real life read these comments). I AM A HORRIBLE RSVP'er! It is a horrible fault!! Thank you for reminding me to stop being a dbag.

  5. hahah, love this! Remember when I got those weird texts with the picture of the native american girl saying they had my daughter? Def the most ridiculous ever. I dont like texts unless they are: funny, informative, or sweet. I do not call ppl back if they dont leave a message. I figure if it wasnt important enough for them to leave a message, then it is not important enough for me to call back. I agree with the RSVPing, too, that is a must! I am currently getting a bunch of wrong RSVP emails from some rando baby shower and I email them all back and tell them it is the wrong email address. They dont seem to get it. The poor lady throwing the shower is going to think nobody is coming!

  6. I am just not a texter. I just cant seem to get into it unles you want a yes or no answer, otherwise I will be calling you back.

  7. ha ha funny! I love texting for some reason. Probably because I work on phones all day long and the last thing I want to do after work is talk on the phone more.

    Now if I could teach my parents to text that would be great. They have massive anxiety attacks if they get a text.

  8. Good texting guidelines! I don't really text that often---I usually just end up calling people!

  9. You should try this for your next workout

    I don't have a cell phone now, but I hated texting when I was living in the US. Usu if someone texted me I called them to reply.

  10. I like this! I'm the worst about reading and forgetting to respond unless I reply right away. Weekends are a different story all together!

  11. i don't enjoy texting. i like talking. a lot. too much. but it is good to know the rules now :)

  12. Text message is a great way to retain your customers at a very low cost. It’s the perfect recipe for customer retention because you can reach out to them very easily. These are customers who have already spent money with you, so chances are, they will come back to spend more and more money with you as long as you keep in touch with them. Thanks a lot.