Why I Hate SMS (Texting)…

To start, I will let my Tweets from tonight speak:

“Ever since living in Ireland 2005-06, I have hated text messages. My hate grows worse here in SoCal. Don’t send 5 texts when you could call!”

“I won’t text back if folks are using it for extensive details rather than calling or email. Officially old & grumpy. Text is for short msgs”

“I wish one could opt out of receiving texts with one’s carrier. I would. I don’t see why I should be charged to be irritated. F*(ked up.”

More of an explanation:
When I went to grad school in Ireland, 2005-2006, it was really expensive to make calls on one’s mobile phone but comparatively cheap to text, thus everyone I knew in Dublin texted like mad and never called.
To help the average American understand, my monthly Vodafone.ie contract allowed for a multitude of texts but only 50 minutes of phone calls per month for approx. $74. The worst insult was that I could only get 6 mb of data a month for an extra $30. Every one, young and old, in Ireland texted.
In contrast, my contract with AT&T here in the States gives me 650 daytime minutes of calls a month, unlimited AT&T to AT&T customer anytime minutes, and free nights & weekends. All of this phone call bounty for $39.99 a month. I also have unlimited data and email on my mobile for $24.99 a month. But to send a text it costs me $0.15 a text and to receive it is $0.10 a text.
What this means is that I can send and receive unlimited emails from my phone for no extra charge, but each text – incoming or outgoing – costs.
Also, because it is more important for me to have the best camera available on my phone, I don’t have a mobile with a QWERTY keyboard. Thus, texting more than one short message is a pain in the thumb and a pain in the wallet.
I could join the Century of the Anchovy and get a big fat ‘ole text plan with 1000 messages or something, but then I would have to start actually texting back and forth to conduct a conversation.
What it boils down to is that for information beyond one idea or detail where one really does need to convey complexity and / or subtly, I will be be calling or emailing. Text (SMS) is my least favorite way to communicate.

2 thoughts on “Why I Hate SMS (Texting)…

  1. Hi Al,
    My contract dates from 2004 in the Old AT&T, thus the prices are different then when folks signed up with Cingular from 2005-2007, or under the new AT&T in the last year.
    The point I was trying to make is that while some might argue that I like to call because it is cheap for me to call (650 mins per month rather than 50 in Ireland), the real argument for me is that 160 characters is too small to make any points or arrangements that are more than super short one idea point/arrangement. It drives me nuts that here in the US, where calls are cheap, that folks use multiple texts to arrange complex plans.
    smiles, jen ;o)

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