I’ve wanted to write this post for a long time now because I want to get it out there in hopes that someone out there agrees with me. I have literally not met one person around my age who does.
I hate texting. Almost as much as I hate Arrested Development.
Texting is fine if you have something quick to say (“I just got here. Where are you?” or “What time do you want to meet?”) but it baffles me how people can have extended conversations through text messaging. It’s just so slow—it could take five minutes to say something through texting when it would take thirty seconds on the phone. I thought that once I got my new phone I’d like texting more, but no such luck.
But I’m not so sure I want to like it, anyway. I just want the rest of the world not to like it so much, for many reasons.
First of all, I hate the way there’s no clear way to end the conversation. When you’re on the phone, you say, “Well, I have to go take a shower/do laundry/go to bed,” say goodbye, and hang up. When you text, sometimes one person thinks the conversation is over when the other doesn’t. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people freak out because someone (usually a romantic interest) didn’t text them back. Um, maybe they thought the conversation was over? Or maybe they just got sick of texting and didn’t feel like responding? Also, like with instant messaging, it’s really hard to communicate tone of voice, so you might end up misunderstanding something someone texts. There are no clear rules on texting etiquette, so it’s easy to misinterpret someone’s texts, or lack of texts.
And speaking of etiquette, why do people think it’s okay to sit there and text while talking to you? I get so annoyed when I’m at dinner with friends or at a party and someone is texting while trying to have a conversation with me. Seriously? I’m not worth your full attention because you have something to say to someone else that can’t wait until you’re done talking to me to my face? Just because I can’t hear what you’re saying doesn’t make it any less rude. I know that we’ve become a generation of multitaskers who have to do everything at the same time, which is part of the appeal of texting, but just because you can text while doing something else doesn’t always mean you should.
I find it profoundly depressing that teenagers today (look at me—twenty-six and already talking about “kids today”) text more often than they make calls. What’s going to happen when they get out into the business world? At work, I know that there are some conversations you have through email and some you have on the phone, and a lot of times it’s easier to get things done via phone. You just need to hear people’s voices sometimes. How will today’s teenagers know how to interact with people on the phone for work if they can’t even call their friends now?
I know that a lot of people feel awkward on the phone sometimes—I do sometimes, too—but do they really feel awkward talking to their friends? Don’t they ever miss the sound of their friends’ voices, especially friends who live far away? I know I do. Are people today really so busy that they can’t set aside the time to talk to people?
Is there really not anyone else who feels this way? I don’t like sounding like a cranky old person, but this is one thing that just gets on my nerves like nothing else.