Don’t end text messages with a full stop, period.
Science has discovered that ending your text messages with a full stop comes across as abrupt and insincere, discovered by a Binghamton University research team, text messages terminating in the little black dot create a less sincere response such as “ok.” and “whatever you want.”
However, end your text in an exclamation point and the receiver feels warmed by such animated punctuation. Despite making the world friendlier, diehard descriptivists shudder as sentences are left hanging with no sense of completion, lacking closure. The reasons for this? I hear you cry. Well Celia Klin, the research leader sheds insight on this issue; “Apparently the dislike of full stops is due to the reader stumbling to try and find meaning within the little of context present in a text message. This results in us interpreting every single aspect of the simplest text.”
Klin elaborates, allowing us to gain further understanding: “When speaking, people easily convey social and emotional information with eye gaze, facial expressions, tone of voice, pauses and so on. People obviously can’t use these mechanisms when they are texting. Thus, it makes sense that texters rely on what they have available to them – emoticons, deliberate misspellings that mimic speech sounds and, according to our data, punctuation.”
This explains why people read so much into text messages and misinterpret them on a whole other level when all they meant was “they had a good time.” But how much of a good time did they have? Did they have an exclamation worthy good time or even better a smiley face of a good time?
With texting now a major form of communication used by most, some argue we should socially define a right way to text. However that’s the joy of text “msgs”, they are unbound by written conventions and allow those of us to express our inner “lol’s” and “yolo’s” but a message to all the teenagers, please don’t think you can get away with such horrors in your English essays unless you wish to be blacklisted by your utterly grammatically correct teacher.
Mirroring what exists in spoken and formal written language; social classes have developed for text speech. There are the so called “grammar snobs” who point blank refused to write anything in text speech followed by ones who may use some text speech such as the acronym ‘btw’ or shortening to ‘tho’ however won’t be seen uttering such atrocities as “lol” or “u”. Despite the different stages of investment in text speech a person has pretty much everyone agrees, there are no excuses for “k”.
Just don’t do it.
Boston High School Newsroom Editor