Daily Prompt: it’s A Text, Text, Text World

How do you communicate differently online than in person, if at all? How do you communicate emotion and intent in a purely written medium?

I like adding smiley faces to my texts, just to make sure intent is not misunderstood – although I don’t do it ALL the time.  I also have to be careful what words I choose, even if it’s important to be brief when texting.

Years ago, one of my clients said to me, “You know, if someone were to find my phone and look through my  messages, they’ll probably have very different ideas about what you and I  do based on the texts between us?”

“Why so?” I asked.

“Well, we text each other like this:

Velvet, can you do me at 1?

Yes I can do you at 1.

“Makes it seem like I’m scheduling for a hooker,” he said as I guffawed loudly.  But he was right.  Even my female clients text me that way, and these days I respond, “Yes, I can see you at 1.”

One of my pet peeves is when my older brother texts me back regarding a question, he’ll answer “OK!” each time.  I’ve wondered if it’s an automatic thing that he uses because whenever I see an exclamation point after any word, I automatically assume that he’s pissed off or annoyed – after all, he is an older brother and that’s his job to be annoyed by everything his sister does.

12 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: it’s A Text, Text, Text World

  1. This is so true…I sometimes wonder if people are aware THAT THEY ARE YELLING AT ME when they email or text in caps for instance. Whether they do or not, the tone of the conversation has been influenced. I try to be aware of it, but we probably all slack on emoticon use for clarity from time to time.

    1. Sometimes they are aware of it and sometimes they’re not, I think, till someone informs them. But then there are those that prefer to just yell via text no matter what 🙂

      1. I particularly enjoy it when it’s a student…”do you mean to yell at me…you know, the one who is grading your work?” 🙂

  2. Hah good points! I’ve gotten myself to the loin where If I don’t use exclamation points or smiley faces when I’m talking with certain friends through text, they get the sense I’m annoyed or upset about something. I hate that I set that precedent for myself, slowly trying to work my way out of it, haha!

    1. Exactly! I’ve yet to ask my brother if that’s an automatic reply that he set up because each time he texts me back with ‘OK!’ I always wonder “what the heck did I do wrong now?”

  3. This is an interesting subject to me, as the majority of my work (and personal) communications take place through text mediums. I overuse emoticons, definitely; I have been burned by the sterility of a words-only medium on more than one occasion, so now I knock myself out with smileys to make sure everyone 🙂 knows 😉 I’m :} happy. 😀

    My husband joked one time that you could tell if I was absolutely furious when I wrote an email, because instead of my usual close, “Thanks! :D” it would have the relatively grim “Thank you.” No Smiley?!! { :0 (musical stinger)

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