Quit texting me!
There are so many social media and electronic communication outlets today, it can be difficult to know what to use, when, and for what.
Couple this with the fact that nowadays everyone from the age of 8 to 88 seems to own a smart phone, and we've just entered the new digital Twilight Zone where everyone is connected 24/7 but nobody knows how to properly communicate anymore.
Don't panic. I'm here to help.
First of all, for the love of all that is Holy, learn how to lock your damn phone. I have been "butt dialed" twice in the past two days and have accidentally overheard things that would make your blood curdle. Don't do that. Lock it up, Bub.
But if you DO mean to communicate something to someone, please pick the appropriate outlet for that message:
Text Messages. For responsible adults with busy lives, texting should be reserved for urgent issues only such as "I'm running late," or "We need milk," or "Your house is on fire." Please do not text me if you just want to chat. I cannot be bothered with your untimely "How are you?" bullshit. Save that for email so I can answer when it's a convenient time for me and not whenever the hell you feel like taking a break from playing Farmville 2.
Facetime. Same deal. Don't make me regret that I gave you my iPhone number, Grandma.
Telephone. Only if you're my Mom, and only on the weekends.
Email. This is the better choice for more involved conversations or questions that don't require an immediate response. Just do us all a favor and make sure you understand the difference between "reply" and "reply all."
Twitter DM. Also known as spam and Gateway to Virus Town. Please don't. Just don't. If I've followed you on Twitter, we're good. I don't need your automated thank you/sales pitch. Let's get to know each other a little before you jam your tongue down my throat. And if you really want to communicate with me, take two seconds and locate my email address at the top of my blog.
Google chat. DAMMIT, why didn't I set my status to "away"?
Skype. Fine. But we schedule in advance, and you better be wearing pants this time, Mister.
Facebook group email to 87 people? I will fucking cut you. Nobody needs to see that shit. And since there is no way to not "reply all" to those group messages in FB, we are all stuck there being notified about everyone else's response until we opt to "leave the conversation." Do me a solid and don't put me in that position, looking like a bag of dicks in front of those 87 other people, m'kay? Just send a regular email, preferably using a BCC (Blind Carbon Copy) to protect the privacy of your distribution list.
And that's just how I deal with my family.
Look, communication is a two-way street. Try to consider what's best for the recipient of your message, in addition to what you need as the sender. When both parties are treated with respect and courtesy, everyone wins.
Now go lock your cell phone. Seriously.