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The final text I will be receiving for the near and perhaps distant future was a compliment form my niece about my tie-dye shirt. While we were in the same grocery store. Instead of just walking over to me and saying, "HI! nice shirt!" She just HAD to text me. That stopped today. No longer will the females of my acquaintance be texting me with messages that could have been told to me in person or by talking to me.

A little background after the squiggle...

I first signed up for my phone plan under a company that was later bought out by ATT. Right before they were to be taken over I redid my contract for another 2 years. I had already scouted out ATT's plans and none of them were any where near the deal that I had. I have unlimited talk to any phone anywhere in America for 55 bucks a month. Their unlimited talk was considerably more at that point and I think at present is approximately twice that amount. Every time they send me some offer for a new phone to replace this beater I think to myself, "Exactly why would I want to spend twice the money to do the same thing?" I will eventually be leaving their company and will probably go with Virgin. At the time I signed up with Cellular One (smaller Central Texas company that was bought out by ATT) I had no interest in texting. I can type like a fiend on a qwerty keyboard but I knew better than to attempt it while driving. I am not fond of even reading them while driving. The thought that I would try to do so while hurtling down 635 in Dallas at breakneck speed is enough for me to want to chuck the thing out the window. Today that ended. I went to my local ATT store and told them to shut it down. These people that cannot see fit to answer their phone or call me will have to decide if it is important enough to call. I am done with texting for now. I am free from receiving mass texts. I will no longer have to pay a quarter every time someone wants to tell me something that could have just as easily been done with a call. While the majority of my texts are from women, men are no less likely to text me. The kids that I work with will fill up my inbox with things that could have been told to me over the phone. If it is important enough to text me, then it is important enough to call me.

Nielsen did a study of age demographics and phone use. The bottom line is that the younger you are the more texts you are likely to send and receive a month. The stats were shocking to me.

Texting is on the rise in a major way. The average U.S. teenager sends an average of 3,339 texts per month, or six texts every hour he or she is awake, according to an extensive study by The Nielsen Company. Kids ages 13 to 17 send roughly twice as many texts as any other age group, outpacing 18 to 24 year-olds, who send about 1,630 texts in any given month. The study tracked data usage from the monthly cell phone bills of more than 60,000 mobile subscribers from April to June 2010 and combined this data with survey answers from more than 3,000 teenagers.
If those kids need to talk to this old man from now on they can do it old school.
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Comment Preferences

  •  Opting out. (27+ / 0-)

    I feel free!

    Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

    by cactusflinthead on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 01:47:44 PM PDT

  •  We have refused to text for years (11+ / 0-)

    We were given a (joking) hard time when my wife told a contractor that she didn't even know how to text.   We used to work in the tech industry (I was a programmer.)   (You worked for _ and you don't text!!!)

    I find it odd to see people obsesively checking their text message while sitting at a presentation.   I even saw a nice looking couple obviously on a date, staring longingly into each other's eyes.   The guy got up (probably to find the waiter, services on Orcas is not spectacular) and the girl immediately whipped out her cell phone and began texting away...

  •  Plato had a similar attitude to yours.. (8+ / 0-)

    ...toward a similarly dangerous innovation, the insidious new technology known as the the written alphabet.

    And now, since you are father of written letters, your paternal goodwill has led you to pronounce the very opposite of what is their real power.

    The fact is that this invention will produce forgetfulness in the souls of those who have learned it. They will not need to exercise their memories, being able to rely on what is written, calling things to mind no longer from within themselves by their own unaided powers, but under the stimulus of external marks that are alien to themselves. So it's not a recipe for memory, but for reminding, that you have discovered.

    And as for wisdom, you're equipping your pupils with only a semblance of it, not with truth. Thanks to you and your invention, your pupils will be widely read without benefit of a teacher's instruction; in consequence, they'll entertain the delusion that they have wide knowledge, while they are, in fact, for the most part incapable of real judgment. They will also be difficult to get on with since they will have become wise merely in their own conceit, not genuinely so.

    From Phaedrus

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 02:07:52 PM PDT

    •  (And I apparently don't know to read... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aitchdee, Wee Mama

      ...the parts of the the alphabet that form the word "Preview," as in "Preview button.")

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 02:09:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks for that interesting link (3+ / 0-)
    •  When the telephone was first introduced to... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cactusflinthead

      .... the Muslim world, there were some Mullahs who were suspicious that this new Western thing could become an evil influence.  

      An enlightened Mullah suggested that if indeed the telephone was an evil thing, it would not pass the words of the holy Qur'an.  He arranged for a test: two Muslim scholars would read from the Qur'an over a telephone line.  

      The words got through fine, and the telephone was accepted.

      Cellphones with their constant drop-outs, and texting with auto-complete that constantly mangles one's words, would have failed that test.  

      Just for the heck of it, try typing a passage from the Qur'an into a text screen with auto-complete, and see what comes out.

      There is something to ancient wisdom after all.  

      "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

      by G2geek on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 11:19:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Some of my coworkers text me (8+ / 0-)

    I have no particular objection to it. However, my (company provided) aged flip phone is not text friendly for receiving, and is totally inimical for responding. I have to keep reminding those with fancy new smart phones that my tools are not compatible, and if they text me I am going to be calling them anyway.

    from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

    by Catte Nappe on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 02:15:20 PM PDT

  •  I would rather get a call on my landline. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cactusflinthead, aitchdee, G2geek

    I don't carry any sort of mobile.

    And ATT screwed me over too.  I was with SBC or somesuch when ATT purchased them, and 'grandfathered' my unlimited local and long distance plans... and yet somehow the price jumped up $10 a month for the exact same plan.  A year or two after that, they kept calling to tell me that they had a 'better' plan that still gave unlimited local and long distance, and would save me $10 a month, so I agreed to switch.  Instead, my bill went up by another $10 a month.  When I called to tell them I wanted to switch back to my old, cheaper plan, I was told it was impossible, it was 'gone'.  I don't know of other carriers in my area who can provide both cheaper, so I simply now just don't answer or hang up as soon as I figure it's an ATT call.   Whatever sort of special they're offering me is only going to raise my rates again somehow.

    •  Virgin seems to have pretty good plans (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wee Mama, aitchdee, Catte Nappe

      Even for the pay as you go things. Unlike most other carriers their bit is to make you buy the phone and then run a fairly cheap rate for service. I bought my ten year old daughter a Kyocera 2300 which resembles a Blackberry for 40 bucks at Walmart and it costs 30 a month for 1500 minutes and 1500 texts and 30MB of downloads. She has yet to exceed her limit. The only thing I pay in addition to her monthly charge is the standard sales tax. There are no other fees, charges, etc. Their "Beyond Talk" plans maintain unlimited web, but we shall see about that. The unlimited talk and text though is pretty clear and for 55 a month that is exactly what I am paying now plus all the peripheral charges. Buying into a new phone is the only real drawback. The coverage has been just as effective as mine with ATT.
      Disclaimer: I do not own stock in Virgin, am not employed by them, neither are any of my family or friends. This is just m personal experience with them.

      Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

      by cactusflinthead on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 03:22:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Where the hell is the "Git offa my lawn!" option? (5+ / 0-)

    It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

    by Murphoney on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 03:17:38 PM PDT

  •  This 56 year old *always* prefers a text (4+ / 0-)

    to a phone call. And I only text my husband while we're in the same location if there is a third person there annoying the living hell out of us.

    Different strokes.

    "Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry."

    by Glinda on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 03:34:52 PM PDT

  •  I'm 48 (3+ / 0-)

    A lot of my friends text; I'd say just about everyone I know, young and old. Now, I can do it. But I dislike it. I think it's clumsy and tedious. OTOH, like the diarist, I can type like a demon on a querty board: on a good day I can do 100+ WPM. (In highschool, a teacher once clocked me at 110, no errors). So, compared to that, texting seems like a substantial step backwards, in terms of efficiency. And in terms of the sheer joy of speed--the wind in your hair, the terrain flying by--it's the difference between handling a Targa--and a Taurus.

    So how essential is it, in this digital new world, that I learn to accept and accommodate the texters among us, anyway? How much of an disadvantaged luddite will I become if I refuse? Over time, do ya s'pose nobody'll bother trying to communicate with me at all?

    Finally, is it possible I'm finding texting so impossibly slow & difficult because, ahem, I'm doing it wrong? For instance, why is the letter "r" such a beyotch to nail? (I think "y" is a pain in the arse as well.) And another thing: the Smart Input Mode isn't helpful AT ALL (I don't think it has guessed right once). But then, having to switch back and forth between EN to en (don't even TALK to me about Numerical)--sometimes 10, even 20 times a message--is just beyond annoying. It takes forEVAH! Why do you kids put up with it? I mean, that's a hell of a lot of buttons to futz with just to say something largely irrelevant anyway! What do you guys say? ;P

    God bless our tinfoil hearts

    by aitchdee on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 03:56:01 PM PDT

    •  Agreed. (6+ / 0-)

      I like talking on the computer, that is no problem at all. Why the whole comment idea is just super duper wonderful. Sitting at a keyboard or even the scrunched down lap top, but trying to peck away with my thumbs is a beating. I maintain that if they have to get some information to me there are a multitude of ways to achieve that goal that do not involve me trying to reply via phone.
      Predictive text or whatever it is called these days..right there with ya, it has yet to predict what I want to say and then I have to figure out how to turn the thing off again, which I inadvertently turned on while it was in my pocket.
      I wish we could test drive phones like we do cars. The best I can do is read reviews online and try to apply what they say to my own use.
      I really don't mind being considered a Luddite concerning this part of technology. More often than not I welcome it, but in this instance I am decidedly not in favor.

      Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

      by cactusflinthead on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 04:16:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The main value to me (6+ / 0-)

      is that it's asynchronous. It takes me about 15-30 seconds to send someone a text with all relevant information that I want to communicate; they'll get it and get back to me whenever they have 15-30 seconds free.

      We don't both need to be free for a solid 5 minutes at the same time in a place where we can talk, hear, and be heard to communicate something silly like "What's your address?" or "I'm going to be a little late" or "What table are you sitting at?"

      And on the "address" note, if it's texted to me, I don't also need a pen and paper at hand.

      "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

      by kyril on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 04:40:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  By the time you have sent me five texts (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aitchdee, MKSinSA

        I am still working on the first reply. I have had a couple of conversations in text when they finally ask if I am going to reply when that is exactly what I am trying to do. In the event I do get a text that has a phone number or other information I still end up writing it down. I constantly have a  notebook with me or any scrap of paper will do for that matter. Yes, your attitude towards the call is what I have confronted with some of my family and coworkers. I figure if it is important enough to contact me they will at some point. If not, well...
        I was one of the last people in my circle to get a cell phone anyhow. It is not out of character for me to be reluctant about some technology. It is interesting to me that in comments some of the people that are the most anti-text are ones that are on computers all day long.

        Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

        by cactusflinthead on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 09:33:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's a skill (6+ / 0-)

          and not one that's easy to pick up later in life, nor one that's particularly useful if you're over 40 or so.

          It's mostly used for a form of social interaction that only actually exists among people who've grown up with the required technology. Basically, we'll make rather vague plans to "do something sometime tonight" with several people. We'll then go somewhere, meet with a few people, and as we go through our evening, having dinner, having drinks, migrating to a dance club or someone's house or wherever, we'll slowly aggregate more people who connect with us through texting.

          If we had to take a phone call from everyone who needed a status update on our location, we'd never get to interact with the people who were actually physically present.

          I'm old enough to remember the late '90s, when we actually did this exotic thing called "making plans." I sometimes miss it. It was easier to figure out what to wear.

          "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

          by kyril on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 09:55:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  There really is a generational gap for me (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kyril, aitchdee, dear occupant

            Almost every text I receive is from someone under 40. The Nielsen study reflects that. Eventually I will go back to texting, I just got tired of getting stuck with an extra 20 bucks a month. Getting a text while I was fifty feet away was the last straw. My days of staying out past the bar closing are few and far between. If I am going to see a buddy's band  that is probably where I am going to be. One  of the girlfriends can call me to say "miss you!" and it will stick with me a lot more. Plus the fact that I can actually hear the tonal qualities in it. Sarcasm is utterly lost in text. Why else would we have to say jk or put an lol on there to state that what we just said was a joke? The loss of the other facets of communication besides the overt message is part of my protest. I genuinely want to hear their voice. What gets left unsaid or is half said is sometimes more important than the actual conversation.

            Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

            by cactusflinthead on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 10:07:47 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  "making plans" is a basic skill. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cactusflinthead

            Not only that, but it's an essential survival skill.  

            When the religious right starts Civil War II, how are you going to fight effectively if you can't make plans?  

            "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

            by G2geek on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 11:23:03 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Well, this young man refuses to call (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shenderson, cactusflinthead, filby

    so I guess we're at an impasse.

    "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

    by kyril on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 04:30:25 PM PDT

  •  I believe its required by law now (0+ / 0-)

    that you have to text while you're driving.

    The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike from sleeping under bridges. ~ Anatole France

    by ActivistGuy on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 04:39:40 PM PDT

  •  You've heard of (4+ / 0-)

    tennis elbow, right? I wonder what the stats are these days for "carpal tunnel syndrome"? I'll bet if I looked, it's a lot worse than it used to be.

    Not to mention they probably are just getting around to naming the new affliction affecting the thumbs and forefingers of anyone born much past 1980. I keep waiting for the epidemic to rear up, and we'll start seeing all these people running around with mini-splints on their hands, going through smartphone-withdrawal cuz the doctor said to lay off the typing....

    And finally, the third reason I could take texting or leave it, for my own sanity and/or my health and well-being--I have to put my damned reading glasses on, the shit is WAY too small to read (and my cheap-ass phone doesn't have big enough font selections)! So forget it, the only time I text is from my office--I can gab briefly with mr. luna over the mundane things (eg. "please stop and pick up a gallon of milk on your way home"--it's very convenient for such chatter).

    What fun, though--your experience is way more entertaining than mine, lol! I picked "smoke signals" in your poll, though I, too, was wondering where the "Get Off My Lawn" choice was :)

    It is time to #Occupy Media.

    by lunachickie on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 04:39:57 PM PDT

  •  I have opted out bigtime. (4+ / 0-)

    Text?  I do not even have a cell phone.  And I do not want one.  I never want to be that accessible.

    I used to be Snow White. And then I drifted. - Mae West

    by CherryTheTart on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 05:36:33 PM PDT

  •  I was forced to text and I do it SOMETIMES (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cactusflinthead, G2geek, marina, MKSinSA

    I'm now close to my 52th birthday.  Texting is part of my shared plan (with my daughter age 27).  I never texted or planned on it until I heard this strange beeping sound on my phone and discovered a holiday greeting from my then hairdresser.  More and more of my friends starting sending me texts and my adult children (also have a son aged 28) starting texting me also.  

    I am a very fast typist as I used to be a medical transcriptionist  who was required to meet a daily production level, but I peck with one finger when texting....no matter how hard I've tried...can't seem to text using my thumbs or very fast.  As a result, I grow weary of texting back and forth and especially so if it's a long conversation.  My fifth text is usually "Call me!" and it's typed with attitude also...lol.  I am trying to get my 73 y.o. mom to get a texting plan because her great grandkids are always including her in text conversations and texting her pics of their kids and  she moans about paying the per text fee.  I grumble but I will admit begrudgingly that texting has its advantages sometimes.

  •  I rarely text but have found it the best way (5+ / 0-)

    to communicate with my daughter who is in Afghanistan.  Otherwise, I don't want it proven that technology is smarter than me!  My friends joke that I can fix complicated medical equipment but consumer electronics confuse me!  

  •  I am so happy to see so many people who don't (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cactusflinthead, G2geek

    text.   Everyone around me send texts to each other but they gave it up with me.   If they are busy and don't answer their phone, they can get their voice message and call me back....

    Nothing in the world is more dangerous than a sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by maybeeso in michigan on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 07:52:24 PM PDT

    •  I don't text. (2+ / 0-)

      My phone is a flip phone with big buttons, no camera (but it does have an FM radio) and is compatible with a hearing aid (for my partner, if he uses it occasionally).

      But I do use Twitter.

      •  Oh I like Twitter! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        maybeeso in michigan

        I don't get it on my phone, but I am all over it on the computer. If I did get the umpteen bazillion tweets that sometimes flow from Twitter directly to my phone I would probably disable it. When I knew Twitter was for me was during the auction for the Tx Rangers. I sat up and watched it as it went down. I love the fact it is so instantaneous.  But, it might be a beating to have it sent directly to my phone.

        Putting on the spectacles of science in expectation of finding an answer to everything looked at signifies inner blindness. -- J(ames) Frank Dobie

        by cactusflinthead on Sun Jul 22, 2012 at 12:33:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I have a camera on my phone--proudly, almost a (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cactusflinthead

        year now.    My granddaughter hates that I don't answer texts.   She's one of the ones who ups the average.

        Nothing in the world is more dangerous than a sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. Martin Luther King, Jr.

        by maybeeso in michigan on Sun Jul 22, 2012 at 04:21:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Texting is a scam. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, cactusflinthead

    If your provider is charging you anything for text messages they are ripping you off.  Every text you send or receive from now until the day you die collectively costs the phone company less than a cent.

    http://www.wired.com/...

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/...

    http://www.nytimes.com/...

    ANY charge your provider levies, ANY limit they place on your service, is pure profit for them.  A feature that should be free is instead used to bilk consumers out of billions annually.  Every time you see the phrase "standard message rates apply," get out the vaseline.

    It ain't free speech if it takes cash money.

    by Uncle Igor on Sun Jul 22, 2012 at 01:28:56 AM PDT

  •  I just got my first cell phone (0+ / 0-)

    I gave up the car phone from OnStar which was $20 a month plus 99 minutes for 49 dollars a year.

    We rarely used it and have used the 99 minutes per year once in 6 years.

    I went with a simple AT&T GoPhone with 250 minutes and unlimited text for $25 a month prepaid with no data plan or contract or activation fees (the phone cost $40).

    I'm learning to text since my children, nieces, and nephew seem to have forgotten that a phone can be used to make calls.

    Since we rarely used the car phone and had no method to send or receive texts, that seemed like the best use of our money.

    BTW: OnStar was totally useless when our engine was destroyed from road debris on the interstate 150 miles from home.

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