It's no secret that text messaging is pretty cool, but it also kind of sucks. With smartphones having established clear protocols that weren't around back in, say, 2007, we've been presented with a new set of communicative obstacles. Here are a few of the more irksome ones:
1. Emoji Emoticon Game-Changing
It used to be easy--never, under any circumstances, use emoticons.
While apps like emjoi do provide the opportunity to crank out gems like the example above, that once clear line is significantly more blurry. Now, it’s about determining which ones are acceptable to use, and which ones aren’t--something that is often so situational it inevitably becomes way too confusing.
This doesn’t even take irony into account, which in itself is (a. flat-out terrible reason to ascribe to anything, and (b. a one-way ticket aboard the hipster train.
2. . haha.
Well, I just made a joke and I’m not sure if it’s funny. haha.
But that’s totally not exactly what that was supposed to mean, haha.
Just a very weird phenomenon that looks irredeemably stupid, but is for some reason almost unavoidable in text messaging. LOL.
3. Wait and Forget
Our human obsession with perpetual one-upsmanship mandates that it’s generally a terrible move to respond to a non-time sensitive text in an efficient manner. This applies to almost all forms of texting--and even if it’s your homie making a joke, getting into one of those 5 minute blitzes is never exactly fun.
Waiting of course, means that you must remember to hit ‘em back later. Not the easiest thing to do if you spend the rest of the day engaging in activities like mindlessly refreshing the internet, or whatever else you do to poison your already pathetic attention span. If you’re like me, you’ll wait so long that you’ll eventually forget. And then people will stop texting you, because you have developed into a weird combination of being simultaneously too cool and too shitty.
4. The Early-Morning Text
A common occurrence on a weekend night--a sporadic conversation with a girl you’re “talking to” will cease around the 1 am mark. (It’s inevitable you’ll stay out later than her, because girls that one “talks to” are generally more difficult to land, due to their unfortunate hatred of the “if you stick around for the later innings, you’ll eventually catch a foul ball” mindless hookup philosophy) Thus, your conversation takes a temporary hiatus, only to be resumed at the reasonable hour of 8 am--the time she’s well past awake, deep into “getting started with her day.”
**It’s very easy to flip the script on this one. Just keep the volume of your texts on high, be willing to get woken up at any time during the night (but let’s be realistic here, you obviously won’t), and when she does wake you up at 8am, just send a response within minutes. She’ll be amazed, and you get to go right back to sleep.
5. "Sent from my iPhone"
Yes, technically not texting, but “Sent from my iPhone” is that kid who wants to be in the school play but can’t because school plays are for losers, so therefore needs one of the people to get sick in order to conveniently take that person’s place and recite all the lines that he had clearly memorized.
Sent from my iPhone is exactly like that kid actually, because Sent from iPhone is a self-defensive douche that for some reason, laces every single response with a contrivedly dismissive middle finger. Despite all its efficiencies, it’s clear that Sent from my iPhone and it’s “HA! If you were worth my time, I’d have sent you a REAL email!” derision cannot be ignored. Sure phone email is great, but phone makers and their obsession with telling others what phone their customers have is certainly not.
6. Closed Phrasing
On Christmas Day, I get this group text from my roomie that read “Merry Christmas Errbody.”Everyone in the text is Jewish. No one responded.
Fast-forward to yesterday, when he’s all like “none of you guys responded to my text...dicks.” Yes maybe, but Judaism aside, “Merry Christmas Errbody,” doesn’t exactly leave room for a witty response. Sure I could be all like “thanks,” but what am I thanking exactly? Why do I need to merit my roommate--one of the few people I can talk to where shitty superficialities like “thanks” need not apply--with a “thanks?” Is this eighth grade, and are we cheerleaders passively-aggressively complimenting one another about being named captain?
Point is, yes I’m somewhat a dick. But more importantly, if you’re gonna text something and expect a response, make sure you make it so that the receiver doesn't to think for 3 hours before he comes up with something he could actually respond with. Don't be a high maintenance friend.
7. Passcode Inferences
I stumbled across this tweet yesterday (these parentheses are here to give you ample time to question the fact that the person who wrote this article follows a twitter account called “DramaQueenProblems”), but semi-questionable judgements aside, she is sort of right.
Really though, it’s the other side of the coin that’s worse. I have no passcode, but do I really want the responses to my terrible attempts at flirting to be broadcasted live from the coffee table? (Maybe).
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