The Do’s and Don’ts of Text Messaging

Or…if only I never said that!

Donna Zinski

July 9, 2021

“The Pen is Mightier Than The Sword.” Several famous philosophers and writers have stated so through the ages. And today we know how powerful the written word has become, and sometimes dangerously so when it incorporates lies and inventive discourse.

We never got lessons about text messaging, right? We’ve made it all our own but we sometimes know when we’ve got a text message, or even an email, that just sometimes what the other person has said is, well, just not that nice.

This may never have been their intention. So, to avoid any misunderstandings, let’s cover a few do’s and don’ts:


  • If you are short-sighted, or far sighted, and get woken up to a text message that requires a quick but important response, wear your glasses. I’ve done this and responded to some really sad news with a smiley face by mistake!
  • Don’t answer any text message when you’ve just woken up. Do not put the snooze button on. You’re still not awake.
  • Don’t use caps on. Apart from the fact it looks like you are shouting (maybe you are), strictly speaking your shouting never stops. It’s also difficult to read.
  • You don’t need punctuation. Text messaging is meant to be quick and short. Follow Twitter rules and keep under 280 characters.
  • Group messaging: Be careful here. If it’s business and doesn’t require a lot of feedback …… perfect. But if it’s an opinion and you’ve sent it to a large group, most may not want to get notified every couple of seconds.
  • Never criticize the originator of a group message or anyone else making comments on a group message. The originator may have made a genuine mistake sending it out to so many. If you don’t want to hear a hundreds pings, drop off the message. See below for instructions.
  • Try and get several thoughts in one-only message. Don’t send five or six messages one after the other. More unnecessary and annoying notifications.
  • Those funny ‘laughing out loud’ LOL texts should be kept strictly for good friends. You wouldn’t say to your boss or client, in person, “I am Laughing My A*s Off!”
  • Some single words come off as insensitive or just plain rude. Like “Thanks” or “K” as if you don’t have time or can’t be bothered to write Thank You or Yes, That’s Fine, in full.

And now for the good stuff:

  • Yes, use emojis. That person you are texting with can’t see your face, can’t hear your voice to judge what the intent is behind your text, but adding an emoji can change the whole sentence completely……in your favor and give it some real context. Just don’t go mad with them.
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