In last week’s episode of Gossip Girl – pop culture’s No. 1 reference for all things tech – nearly every character took to typing on their phones to get back at one other. Even Serena’s professor busted out a text: Curt, to-the-point, sort of inappropriate. (Do professors text their students now?) But according to a new Nielsen study, the country’s real texters aren’t old enough yet to miss office hours. They’re too busy being dextrous and unsentimental. That’s right – they’re tweens. Kids aged 13 to 17 sent out texts at a rate of six per waking hour this past spring. Girls alone exchanged 4,050 per month – the volume of a slim novella. They’re texting so prodigiously, they’re not really talking anymore, according to Nielsen, and all for a simple reason: “Because it’s fun.”
As a texter myself, I have an explanation to my flurry of messages: Voicemail is annoying. You have to press things and wait and maybe you accidentally delete and hang up and call the person and they’re all, “Did you listen to my message?” and you have to explain and they have to repeat. I say, let’s follow the tweens. They know what they’re talking about. (Exhibit A: I started YA book The Hunger Games this weekend and couldn’t put it down.) Are you with me, PopWatchers? Txt 4 Ev?