Finding the correct length for an instant message is not always easy. It all depends on how much you have to say. The problem is when you have a lot to say you may be tempted to blurt. The IM version of blurting is a long paragraph of speech. So how do you curb a blurt?
- Delete redundancies
- Shorten sentences where possible
- Break it up into multiple sends
That should help.
The land of IM is where abbreviated typing now known erroneously as text speak, began. A lot of the time, this is a great time saver, or finger saver as the case may be.
A problem arises when people try to make it up as they go along. Who knows what WAFH means?
- Wearing a funny hat
- Waiting around for Harry
- Working for a Fu*** hick
The potential is endless. Word to the wise, don’t make up your own, it’s too unclear.
It happens every once and awhile. Maybe you were tired or distracted. Whatever the reason you clicked on the wrong name. It is a minor faux pas in the grand scheme of things, but just in case here are steps for handling the situation.
If you realize at the beginning of a conversation here are your options:
- Have a brief chat on a topic that is actually relevant to your unintended chat partner.
- Explain that you miss clicked and apologize for interrupting them.
If you realized in the middle of a conversation here are some options:
- Apologize for getting off on a tangent and re-orient the conversation.
- Fess up to your case of mistaken identity and explain the similarity in user names that caused the confusion.
If you figured it out at the end of the conversation then the damage is already done.
An annoying habit of some IMers is the propensity to give you a little bit of data without filling in all of the blanks. It can go a little bit something like this:
Janie80: Going to the bar tonight u wanna come?
Roboticous: Sure, when?
Janie80: Later. Gotta run C U 2 nite.
Janie80: Signed off
Annoying since you don’t know where or when. When the matter is personal this isn’t a big deal. Most of us could do without the expense and humiliation of drinking out.
If the matter is business it can be more of an issue. Missing an important meeting can be a career ender.