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Using text for love and romance

Do you flirt via text message? Come on. I know you do. I’m guilty myself. A few carefully-crafted words can go a long way. It appears that the majority of cell phone users are doing it, according to a recent survey. Of 1,000 respondents age 18 to 55, 67 percent said they used text messaging to flirt. So don’t try to act like you don’t. Also, 68 percent said they used it to send a love note. If you’re in a relationship, this is standard practice. It’s an especially effective medium during work hours, when a phone call might be inappropriate.

“People have discovered that there are moments when just the right text, sent at just the right time, can go a long way to keeping romance alive,” said Alecia Bridgwater, director of messaging for AT&T’s wireless unit, in a statement. “We wanted to understand more deeply how our customers were using text messaging in this way, and our study turned up some interesting insights.”

I have a few friends, as I’m sure you do, who despise text messaging. They complain that no one can take the time to pick up the phone any more. This reminds me of people who complained about cell phones and the Internet — and even landlines and the fax machines — saying that it takes away from face to face communications.

Personally, I think it’s an excellent medium. You can send off a short note when appropriate, just to stay in contact. You can converse when it’s inappropriate for one of the parties to be talking on the phone. And you can try to convince a lady friend to join you at a bar. You know, the bar where it’s way too loud to talk to someone on the phone.

Of course, the younger generations are far more likely to use text messaging in this way. As we grow older, though, and new generations grow up with text messaging, we’ll see its use spread even more.