We live in an information age, where people know more about you and your activities than you would sometimes like. Even though we promote this through our actions – posting what kind of ice cream we like on Facebook and tweeting about what the clerk at the hotel said to you 30 seconds ago – we are still victims of our own demise.
In the midst of this vast information change, some negative features to technology have rose and fell, but one still remains in full force.
The group text message – a technological tool originated from Satan himself, but perfected by our friends at Apple, Inc.
There are plenty of reasons why people may think group messages are ‘cool’ and ‘useful’ in the world of continual communication – but believe me when I say the negatives outweigh the positives 10 to 1. Below are simply 5 examples why people should stop sending group text messages.
They Will Get Someone In Trouble
A simple, innocent text message to a group of a few friends can quickly become a death wish for someone’s relationship with the extended parties. I have personally experienced this – and yes – there is second-hand embarrassment. Some people may not be as technologically advanced as others or may lose attention to detail during crucial moments, such as responding to group text messages thinking they are only responding to the sender – or even accidentally clicking back to the group message to respond in the future to an individual within the group.
My second-hand embarrassment went something like this:
Sender (to the entire group): Hey guys!!! Tomorrow night we are all getting together for football, hope everyone can make it?
Dave: Is Hugh coming? That guy really sucks, especially after a few beers…..
Hugh: Thanks Dave…tell me how you really feel?
From that point forward, the conversation stopped and everyone involved in the text message silenced themselves to any response whatsoever. The next day, no one got together for the football game in fear that an outbreak would occur. To date, my friend who sent the text message never sent another group message again.
Be careful who is involved in the group message before you respond to the message – it could definitely have repercussions if you say something offensive.
The Phone Won’t Stop Ringing
Another negative attribute to group text messages is simply the annoying continual responses, just for a few people to send a quick response. For example, if a sender shoots a text to 20 individuals about an event and asks them to R.S.V.P. via the text message to whether or not they are coming, you may have 20 additional text rings on your phone from everyone responding to a message.
After 20 ‘yes’ responses, you are probably more inclined to tell everyone to ‘get lost’ than to look forward to an event. If you are sending out a group message, the proper thing to do is send messages in groups of 5 to avoid massive recoil from recipients.
If the group text message includes a massive amount of people, some of whom you may know but don’t have their phone numbers, you may find yourself attempting to figure out what everyone is talking about and who is saying each comment. A random phone number may say something important within the group message, but if you don’t know who is stating that particular response, it may discredit the response altogether.
A specific example would be work situations, where some ‘noobie’ sends out a group text message to the team about a new product design in the works at the manufacturing plant. Rather than sending an email, this ‘noobie’ sends a massive group message to everyone involved in the division, many of whom you probably don’t know or don’t have phone contact with, and therefore the responses become largely discredited. Tom from marketing could be giving input about the physics of the product at hand, where he has no real expertise.
It Takes Up A lot of Data
Given the new technology of the cloud and other online storage resources, people have resorted to buying the bare minimum GB Smartphone because it is the most cost-effective. But if someone sends of a photo group message with a picture of some cute baby, everyone else in the mix may want to match the photo with their own ‘cute baby pic’ and before you know it, you got 20 new photos cluttering up your photo, slowing down your communication.
It is Just Plain Unprofessional and Impersonal
Group messaging does exactly what many other messaging platforms do – they create an artificial connection. As time progresses, people will become more and more introvert, believe it or not, due to the lack of face to face activity – this is just an inevitable fact to the lack of personal relationships and speaking. If you must text, it is best to send individual messages to friends, family, or co-workers that explain a specific goal or ambition with the option for one word responses. You can then follow it up with a phone conversation or email – sending paragraphs of text is just stupid.
Use text messages effectively and if you are sending a group message make sure the message is on a subject matter that is not potentially offensive. In addition, keep the group small to avoid backlash and an endless flood of ringing phones. If you really feel the need to contact a million people with the same message, at least utilize apps like Facebook Chat or GroupMe where people can change their notification settings and see everyone who is talking.
This article was written by Matthew Hall. Prior to becoming a professional writer and content creator for ScottDOwens.com, Matthew attended University of Central Florida where he studied English and Political Science.