Expert shares text etiquette in UAE: A message must be only 30 seconds long

Staff Reporter /Sharjah Filed on November 9, 2020
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Professional development coach Ammar El Sakhawy gave tips on how to navigate the challenges in communicating via texts

In an era when old-fashioned phone calls has been replaced with texts and social media messages — there are some dos and don’ts that some people may not be aware of.

At a social media session titled ‘Text Etiquette’, held on the ‘Sharjah Reads’ virtual platform as part of the Sharjah International Book Fair, professional development coach Ammar El Sakhawy gave tips on how to navigate the challenges in communicating via texts.

One important guideline, he said, is the 30-second rule. “It is crucial not to send very long messages or texts; you risk losing the attention of the recipient when a text takes more than 30 seconds to read.”

If a message is too long and would take more half a minute of a person’s time, then it is best to make a call, El Sakhawy said. “At the same time, do not call a person who has sent you a message, because if they were in a position to speak they would have called instead of messaging you in the first place.”

Patience is another crucial rule. “If you do not receive an answer, it does not mean that the recipient does not want to engage with you. They could simply be busy,” El Sakhawy said.

“However, etiquette demands that messages be answered promptly,” he added.

El Sakhawy pointed out that it was important not to ridicule someone through texts. “Always doublecheck to ensure the auto correct facility is not messing up the text which may cause you and the recipient embarrassment,” he said.

“Also, ensure that the text is sent to the right person and take care not to discuss personal affairs on group texting platforms.”

The session also threw light on key abbreviations and acronyms used by social media users.

Staff Reporter

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