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The Do’s and Dont’s of Text Messaging

August 4, 2009
Don't Text-and-Drive
Don’t Text-and-Drive


Text etiquette Do’s and Don’ts
Avoid pushing the wrong buttons

No one can doubt the popularity of (SMS) short messaging service or text messaging.  It is one of the easiest and most useful means of mobile communication.   More than 250 billion SMS messages were sent across the world’s GSM last year and this year texting has been news worthy several times. “Texts while driving even more dangerous “, “Free Speech in China? Text Me” “Iran ‘lifts block on SMS texting’” and don’t forget, “Teens texting nude pictures”. 

Popularity and excitement over using this technology sometimes clashes head-on with common courtesy. So to avoid SMS miscues and text-message missteps, we have composed a list of texting Do’s and Don’ts.

Do keep it light and simple. The medium is meant for short and sweet, so keep it that way. Verizon states that anything over 160 characters should be an email or a call.

Do let someone know who you are. If they don’t have your phone number listed and/or saved in their phone, the message may come over anonymously.

Do respond to all text messages when you have a chance. Respond to a text message with a text message, email or a phone call.

Do be aware of your tone. It is extremely difficult to discern tone in text messages, just as in e-mail. What seems to you to be a completely innocuous message may be grossly misinterpreted by the recipient, causing certain discomfort if not irreparable harm.

Don’t compose an SMS (or text message) while you’re in a face-to-face conversation with someone.
  This is just as rude as taking a voice call. Do remember that common courtesy still rules.

Don’t SMS while you’re driving. Talking on the phone is bad enough. You won’t know what hit you – or what you hit – if you are pounding out a message on your keyboard.

Don’t rely on text messaging. It’s a great medium for communicating to others, but it’s not enough to sustain a relationship.

Don’t text message in class, meetings, movies, church etc. People can hear you clicking away or see the light from your screen. This is just rude.

Don’t text-message anything confidential, or potentially embarrassing. There is nothing private about texting,

For a workshop on Techno Etiquette that discusses the proper protocol in the use of electronic and digital  devices so that you are considerate of people around you with protocol and decorum.   Have you considered your Virtual Image lately?

One Comment leave one →
  1. August 4, 2009 3:44 PM

    These are great… I would think that workplace editors at many publications might find this information useful, and perhaps worthy of an article.

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