The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Text messaging gains in popularity

Students find method more convenient, less intrusive than talking on the phone
 Text messaging gains in popularity
Text messaging gains in popularity

Text messaging gains in popularity

Whenever Angela Liedtke gets out of class, the first thing shedoes is check her phone for a text message.  

She responds immediately to each one.  For Liedtke, asophomore advertising major at SMU, text messaging has become oneof the primary ways she communicates with friends and family.

“Text messaging is just so convenient.  I don’tknow what I would do without it,” Liedtke said.

Liedtke is not alone.  Text messaging has become animportant way to communicate for many young people.

A recent study by Verizon Wireless found text messaging hasbecome the new way to confirm information and keep in touch for the15 to 30-year-old set, according to Henry Wang, an operationsspecialist with the company.

Verizon Wireless conducted its survey of 15 to 40-year-oldsduring the first three months of 2002.  The survey found thatcustomers sent more than 2 million messages a day, up 68 percentfrom the previous quarter.

“We’ve noticed through our consumer reports thattext messaging has risen dramatically over the past three years. More and more young people are discovering the convenience ofkeeping in touch through texting, rather then making time consumingcalls,” Wang said.

Some students do not understand the fascination with textmessaging.

“I’m not into text messaging.  I’d ratherjust call my friends,” said Corinne Jesse, a first-yearmarkets and culture major. “Besides it takes just as long totype a message in as it does to pick up the phone and call theperson.”

If the popularity of text messaging continues, American citizensmay one day be able to vote via text messaging. Michael Poutsi,chairman and chief executive of the wireless communications, Inc, announced this technological advancement in Septemberat the Global Mobile Conference

“Other countries, such as South Korea, have already runtrials with voting via text messaging and it is proving to be aneffective method for increasing voter participation,” Poutsisaid.

According to a poll of members, two-thirds out of 43,276people said they would be more likely to vote if they could usetheir mobile phones to vote.

“It would be convenient to vote using text messaging. I think that young people would be the highest percentage ofvoters if this was an option,” sophomore broadcast journalismmajor Victor Nguyen said.

In the meantime, students at SMU use text messages especiallyduring times when talking on the phone is inconvenient.

“Text messaging allows me to get straight to what I wantto say, without having to make small talk on the phone,”sophomore finance major Tommy Valenta said.

Text messaging has also become a popular way for businesses toalert customers of special offers on upcoming promotions or events. The Wireless Association of America received 41 applicationsin 2003 to use text messaging for commercial purposes. Companies are required to go through the association beforesending out text messages to the consumer.

Verizon’s survey found women to be the leaders in thetexting revolution.  Among women between 30 and 40, 87 percentsurveyed said text messaging would help their personal and businesscommunications.  Woman said multitasking was the main reasonthey found text messaging convenient.

Women at SMU agree.

“I can be on the phone while sending out messages at thesame time,” sophomore business major Meagan Moll said.

Text messaging prices at Verizon range from $2.99 for 100messages a month to $4.99 for unlimited monthly text messaging. 

Those without a plan are charged 2 cents to receive messages and10 cents to send out messages.  The wireless carrier MetroPCScharges $3 per month for unlimited text messaging.

Some students do not like text messaging because it isimpersonal.

“I prefer actually talking to my friends in person ratherthen text messaging,” junior marketing major Scott Alexandersaid.

But many other students at SMU said they would be lost withouttext messaging.

“I was one of the first of my friends to discover textmessaging,” sophomore business major Brooke Reese said. “Now all of my friends are really into text messaging. I don’t know what I would do if it was not on myphone.”

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