Text De-coding for Beginners

One of the issues of the modern world is the double-headed sword of technology, for example Skype sounds amazing, but when you actually try talking to your best friend in south Africa it turns out it’s not all that revolutionary after all, you basically end up saying ‘can you see me?!’ instead of the old days of phones ‘can you hear me?!’.

An issue even more common is what the hell do some people mean when they text?! Not only do we have to worry about their message but also the subliminal message within their message, eg. ‘He said it was awesome to see me, but only put one x?’ So how
was it actually?! If I put two ‘x’s will he think I’m a freak?! Furthermore we have to think of the interpretive message. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve gotten into issues with people because I’ve misinterpreted the way their text was meant to be interpreted, the amount of times and argument can hinge on the geography of the full stop, who knew?! A person who is as chatty as the day is long when you meet them in person can literally be reduced to guttural sounds in cyber space ‘meh’. The thing I find most annoying is the time it takes people to text back. If the texting world were a real place there’d be a million people left standing waiting for the other person to return, releasing them from the cliff-hanger of knowing what they had for dinner. Why can’t people just reply as they normally would? Why is it not ok for me to text back immediately if I’ve just read the text and have time on my hands?

Texting etiquette is also pretty diverse, like why do some people text and put kisses at the end of every sentence? The inspiration for this post for example came from this text “working till close hun xx haha xx when else can u do? Xx” do it if you want but I can assure you in real life this girl has never stopped in the middle of a sentence to give me a kiss on the cheek. Kissing opens up a can of worms all to itself. Personally I end all my texts with a standard one ‘x’, saves confusion and it means I don’t end up doing what some people do which is rate the worth of a text by the kisses you get in the next text. But I’ve then been accused of being unfriendly in texts because of this, and because I need smileys myself to interpret meaning in texts, can I blame a person for needing kisses?

Maybe we should return to calling people, quicker, easier, ultimately probably a lot less painful, but of course we never will. Something a phone call can never do is create the excitement sending a text into cyber space can generate. Wondering about the meaning of a text adds an air of mystery, making even David Cameron into some from of deviant by his texts in the Leveson Enquiry, although that suggests he wasn’t a deviant to start with. No, ultimately, although we may complain, texting is fun because (not in spite of) these floors.