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Quiz: Are You A Good Texter?

Sure, you send and receive text messages almost constantly. But are you even very good at it? Take our quiz and find out.

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  1. 1. There is a friend with whom you haven't talked in a while and want to catch up.

    What do you text him/her to start the conversation?

    What do you text him/her to start the conversation?

    A

    Hi

    B

    what's up

    C

    How have you been? We should talk soon!

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    C) is the best choice here. I's annoying to get a vague and purposeless text message like "hi" or "what's up" — it draws out the conversation longer than necessary. State your objective up front!

  2. 2. The person you're texting with made a cute/charming/humorous comment.

    How do you signal your approval?

    How do you signal your approval?

    A

    lol

    B

    Hahaha

    C

    :p

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    An occasional "lol" is not the end of the world, but it's come to signify a great range of things beyond simple, genuine laughter. Sarcasm, for one. Boredom, for another. Typing out actual laughter makes it clear that it might actually be happening. The tongue emoticon, however, is simply inexcusable. Put that away.

  3. 3. Someone you've been seeing romantically has texted you to see if you are available to go out tonight. You'd like to, but have other dinner plans.

    How do you respond?

    How do you respond?

    A

    I'm sorry, I'm busy! Another time!

    B

    Nah, can't tonight

    C

    Wish I could, but I've got other plans. Let's plan something else soon. :)

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    C) is the best bet here. Don't go overboard on emoticons, but an occasional smiley face shows you're actually happy/excited, and that's especially important if another person's perception of your feelings towards them might be unclear. A) is too vague, and B) is a sickening injustice. Never write "nah"! Just never, ever do it. It's mean. It looks careless and it makes people feel like shit every time.

  4. 4. You've been on one or two dates with someone you're no longer interested in seeing. This person has, however, asked to see you this weekend.

    You respond:

    You respond:

    A

    Ahh, sorry, I'll be out of town this weekend

    B

    Thanks, but I just don't think I'm feeling a connection.

    C

    [No response]

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    B) is hardest to do, but it is also the most respectful. Besides, you're just texting, not having to say it to this person's face. A) is merely delaying the need to do B), and C) is just rude.

  5. 5. You exchanged numbers with someone at a bar the other night and want to text him or her to let him or her know you're interested in hanging out.

    You text:

    You text:

    A

    ;)

    B

    Hey babe, what are you up to?

    C

    Hi [their name], it's [your name]. It was great meeting you the other night. Hope to see you again soon.

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    If you think C) is the obvious choice, you are both correct and smarter than A LOT of people. A wink face should never be used with someone you don't know VERY well, and neither should pet names like "babe." Also PLEASE STOP ASKING WHAT PEOPLE ARE UP TO.

  6. 6. You're mad at your S.O. about a fight you had and want to let him or her know you're still upset.

    What do you text your S.O.?

    What do you text your S.O.?

    A

    I'm not happy about the way our talk ended. Can we try again tonight?

    B

    So I guess you're probably already over last night, huh

    C

    I hope you're having a good day at work so far.

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    If you're mad, you're mad. A) lets your S.O. know you're mad in a composed and patient way, without invoking the pointless passive-aggression of B). C) is conflict avoidance and I do not accept that shit around here.

  7. 7. The text message you just received from a friend/S.O. has a typo in it (your for you're, definately, etc.).

    You text back:

    You text back:

    A

    Your reply, with "It's YOU'RE!/It's DEFINITELY!" thrown in.

    B

    Your reply, with the correct spelling of the word wedged in "naturally."

    C

    Your reply, with the typo unacknowledged.

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    OK, C) is actually your best bet with someone you don't want to hate you, but if you have a good relationship with this person and s/he loves you even though you are kind of a jerk (but a jerk who cares about good spelling), you can go for B) once in a while. It's fine. They will get it through osmosis, someday.

  8. 8. You're meeting a friend for drinks and have agreed on the bar and time. She texts you, "See you then!"

    You reply:

    You reply:

    A

    k

    B

    Sounds good!

    C

    [Nothing]

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    A reply isn't strictly required here, but it's still a good idea to acknowledge that you've seen the plan and are still agreeable to it. Again, with closer friends, in this case, it's okay to skip a response here and there. But never, ever text "k." If you're thinking about texting "k," just text nothing at all. Drop your phone in a sewer. What's the point?

  9. 9. After going out with friends, you find yourself in the neighborhood of the guy/girl you've recently started seeing. It's after midnight.

    You text:

    You text:

    A

    [Nothing]

    B

    I'm in your neighborhood! You still up?

    C

    Just walked by your apartment on the way home. Can't wait to see you again.

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    A

    This is a LITTLE tricky, because getting C) from the right person would literally destroy me/a lot of people (in a good way!). BUT. It's still too big a risk for someone you only sort of know, and the safest rule you can follow is to never text people after midnight. B) is creepy. But you knew that, right? RIGHT?

  10. 10. It's a major, national holiday.

    You send the following text:

    You send the following text:

    A

    "Merry Christmas!/Happy New Year!/Happy Thanksgiving!" to your entire contact list

    B

    "Merry Christmas!/Happy New Year!/Happy Thanksgiving!" to everyone you've ever hooked up with

    C

    "Merry Christmas!/Happy New Year!/Happy Thanksgiving!" to close friends and family you won't be seeing in person

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    C) is, I hope, the obvious choice here. There is simply no reason to wish happy holidays upon people you haven't talked to in ages, and there's probably even less reason to specifically direct those wishes at people with whom you used to hook up. Brief holiday greetings are not the way back into someone's pants! I don't think? Hey, do you know something I don't?

  11. 11. You texted a friend or romantic interest to see if s/he wanted to hang out a few days ago, and s/he never responded.

    To follow up, you text:

    To follow up, you text:

    A

    [Nothing]

    B

    Hey! Do you have plans this weekend? Let's hang out soon!

    C

    Did you get my text the other night?

    Correct!
    Wrong!

    B) is a good option here. If you've sent one unanswered text to a friend, you get two follow-ups before you know Shit Is Going On. If it's a date, you get just one. DON'T ask them about your previous attempt(s), like in C), because this makes you look sad and grudge-y. A) is okay, but only if you're ready to give up that quickly. It's okay to push back, but ONLY to the levels I've specified.

Quiz: Are You A Good Texter?

If you scored:

0-4: You are a Terrible Texter. This doesn't have to be so hard! I know we're working with limited space here, but you need to introduce full words and sentences into your texting lexicon. (Texticon?) Be more respectful, direct, and thoughtful with your texing. It will make your life better!

5-8: You are a Tepid Texter. You've got a handle on some of this, but other rules escape you. (Let me guess: you're gonna fight me on "nah," aren't you?) A lot of these things slide with close friends and family, but to have broader appeal and success in the World Of Texting (which, incidentally, is just the normal world), you could afford to study up on a few of the above tips.

9-11: You are a Terrific Texter, and also a charming, intelligent, socially graceful human being. You're not perfect, but who is? (Those of you who scored 11: you are actually perfect.) Keep up the good work, keep your little fingers rested, and keep sharing your wisdom with the masses.

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