Texting Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts

Texting is quickly becoming the standard of choice for communication in our society.   Here are a few tips to make sure you are following your manners when texting and not being rude:

Don’t text while driving.  It’s dangerous.  A quick message is not worth risking a life for.  Many municipalities are passing laws to make texting while driving illegal.

Don’t text while having a face-to-face conversation.  This includes dinner conversation.  How rude.

Don’t text during a meeting, class, job interview, wedding, performance, or funeral.  It’s not only rude, but distracting to others.  Follow the same courtesies you would use for a phone call in these situations.

Do sign your text.  Not everyone recognizes your number.

Do use proper punctuation.  It’s time consuming and we get lazy.  However, if you use texting in a professional setting, you need to use proper grammar.  Don’t trust yourself to be able to switch your writing style as needed.  We become creatures of habit.

Do use “text speak” selectively.  Not everyone is familiar with the abbreviations and may misinterpret the meaning of your message.

Do be patient when waiting for a response.  The recipient may be driving, dining, in a meeting, or attending a funeral.

Do remember texting is not private.  If you don’t want it on the front page of the New York Times, don’t text it.

Do keep your messages short and to the point.  If you need to write several paragraphs, make a phone call, write a letter, or send an e-mail instead.

Remember, not everyone has texting capabilities.  Don’t assume the recipient has this feature on their phone.  Not everyone can afford it or they elect not to have it for various reasons.  Respect their decision for usage.  Always check with the recipient before initiating a text conversation.

Happy and safe texting!


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