The art of texting is something that is still rather new and continuously developing in our society. While many of us can consider ourselves seasoned pros, does anyone really understand the rules of texting? And, I guess, the bigger question is: are there rules to texting? Well, I'm going to explain some that I have found to be rather important.
One major debate that I have noticed is the question of when it is okay to not text back. Sometimes it's easy to know when you say something along the lines of "goodnight" and the other person responds with a mutual "goodnight," there is no need to follow that up. However, sometimes the lines get a little more blurry. The thing about texting is that is nowhere near as formal as a phone call or even an email. There is no need for a text to start with "Dear Jody," or even a "hello" just as there is no need for a text to end with "Sincerely, Charles" or "goodbye." Texting can be quick, ungrammatical, and highly informal, but there are still general guidelines that should be followed to not appear rude.
One such guideline would be responding when someone asks a direct question. I know there are circumstances where the person who is asking the question is someone who you don't want to talk to, then it is okay. However, in the case of it being a friend or acquaintance with whom you are on good terms, if they send out a group message asking something like "Would any of you be interested in going to the Beyonce concert in April?" you would then respond with a "of course" or "no way". No matter what you say, a response is polite because someone asked you a direct question. Think of it this way, if you were sitting at lunch with your friends and one of them asked you a question like this, would you just sit there and stare at this, offering no indication that you even heard them? No, because that is extremely rude.
Something else along the lines of texting etiquette is how you say things and to whom. Society has modernized tremendously and this means that bosses will text their employees. If your new boss texts you to ask something about scheduling, responding with "who dis" is certainly not appropriate. (Trust me, this exchange happened in a group message I was a part of for my summer job). My point is, formality plays a role when texting certain people. You can approach your friends one way, your parents another, and your employers another, you just have to be careful to not mix up any of the before mentioned categories.
People definitely have different options about what is considered polite and socially acceptable. People have different ideas about what they can and can't do while texting. My whole point of this article is basically, if someone asks you a question, just respond. They know you received it because of that little delivered sign under the text and by the fact that they know your phone is in your hand for a majority of the day and that you obsessively check it.