In a society where our cell phones are almost always within arm’s reach, sexting is a routine form of flirting, and group hangouts are punctuated with periods of silent screen tapping, it’s safe to say that texting is one of the most frequently used forms of communication.
Just as there is a proper etiquette for having a face-to-face verbal discussion, like maintaining appropriate eye-contact and tone of voice, there are rules to follow when texting to communicate in the most effective way possible.
Unfortunately, some people have been texting a certain way for so long that they don’t even notice they are actually being really annoying. Not only can this distort an intended message, but it can also be a turn-off.
Here are some annoying texting habits that need to be eliminated:
1. The Emoji Fiend.
A common annoyance, this involves the frequent and unnecessary use of emojis. Sure, there’s nothing wrong with emphasizing your point with the occasional emoji but when whole texts consist only of emojis (and lots of them), there’s a problem. Constant emoji use shows you have nothing better to say, so just end the conversation.
2. The Mysterious Trail-Off.
Is there anything more annoying than someone constantly trailing off their sentences with …? The huge downside to texting is the lack of tone and ellipses are designed to help. But they only help when you actually use them properly. If you don’t, they’re the easiest way to make someone overthink a simple text or interpret something innocent as something more. “We could go get ice cream after …” Do you actually mean ice cream or sex?! I’m not a mind reader!
3. The LOL Abuser.
“I went shopping today lol” Was there any reason to laugh out loud after that sentence? No. I won’t think you’re mad at me if you end your sentences with periods instead of laughter; I’ll think you’re mature. This texting laughter is a great judge of interest level and engagement, so don’t abuse it.
4. The Novelist.
Consider your texts like tweets; they should have a limit of 140 characters. If you have a story to tell, there’s a neat function on your phone you can use — it’s called the PHONE! Whoever you are talking to would likely rather hear your story told properly with your emotion behind it instead of scrolling through novel-length texts. Think Hemingway not Tolstoy.
5. The Double-Texter.
Are you incredibly thirsty? If you’re sending double texts, chances are you should grab a sports drink quickly. Whoever you are texting didn’t answer you for a reason, don’t double-text them unless absolutely necessary. This also goes for multiple texts sent at once mid-conversation. There’s nothing wrong with breaking up your thoughts into smaller, easier-to-read texts but if you’re sending five texts in one sitting, you’re being annoying — two is fine, three is pushing it.
6. The Temporarily Blind.
Bae hasn’t answered your text in five minutes … they must have gone blind. That’s the only reason they wouldn’t answer, right? If you can’t talk at the moment, there’s nothing wrong with shooting a quick “Hey, can’t talk now, txt u later.” Anyone would much rather that than wondering why you haven’t answered in hours, especially if you have your read receipts turned on. I’m not saying you have to answer right away but if you’re repeatedly not answering texts, people will get annoyed.
7. The Text Bubbler.
Like Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense, this text was dead the whole time. I’m referring to, of course, when the tiny little text bubble that pops up as someone is typing a message but they never end up sending it. It’s easy to get distracted when texting, especially if you’re talking to multiple people at once but don’t start typing a message you don’t plan on sending! Seeing that bubble and expecting an answer is enough to drive someone mad with anticipation depending on the conversation, particularly if the text is from a romantic interest.
8. The Group Chat Starter.
This habit of repeatedly blowing up a group chat is the fastest way to piss off multiple friends at once. Group chats are a great thing sometimes; other times they’re the bane of your existence. Don’t be that friend that blows up the group for stupid stuff and switch to an individual text if what you have to say doesn’t apply to the whole group.
9. The Grammar Vigilante.
Chances are this person has been running from the grammar police for a very long time, not just since they started texting. Granted, there’s nothing wrong with using abbreviations (it is a text message, after all), but if your texts look like you had a stroke while typing, you need to start using autocorrect or give your thoughts a quick proofread before sending. Bad spelling and grammar can make people think you’re less intelligent, so do yourself a favor and type like you passed fifth grade.
10. The Person Who Texts While You’re Talking To Them.
Unlike the rest of the listed habits, this one refers to when and where you text and not what you’re actually saying. This seems like common sense, but how many times have you been hanging out with friends and your conversations keep getting interrupted by people who aren’t even there? Obviously, texting in certain circumstances is fine but constantly texting while you’re with other people shows you’re disinterested. This is especially important on dates! Show your friends you care and put down your damn phone for a little while.