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Obsessed with texting

These days, people are obsessed with text messaging.

Look down the street and you'll see people texting. Observe your classmates during class and you'll find somebody secretly texting behind a table. Take a peek into cars driving down the road and you'll see drivers texting.

Some of my friends use up thousands of text messages a month. Many parents have even taken up texting, using it to inform their children when they're getting picked up or what time they should come home.

Not only has the texting craze taken over America, it has also spread halfway across the globe. Two summers ago, when I traveled to China, I noticed that everybody there was sending text messages.

So why have we resorted to this slow, indirect method of communication? Why do we pay extra to add texting services to our cell phone plans when it would be so much easier just to call?

A year ago, I had never sent a text message. I was baffled by why my friends texted: It takes practically an hour of back-and-forth exchanges to get a simple point across. Wouldn't it be so much easier and so much faster just to call? I was so intrigued by the whole phenomenon that I decided to try texting to find out what's so addictive about it.

I got myself a basic $5 250-messages-per-month texting plan from my carrier, Verizon Wireless. That's like eight messages a day, I thought; surely that will be more than enough.

Initially, I didn't discover anything great about texting. Just like I had previously thought, it was a slow and ineffective method of communication.

However, as I got used to typing on my phone, I gradually started to understand the appeal of texting. When I have a simple question to ask, I can simply text message it to someone. Somehow, it seems like less trouble than actually calling that person.

In addition, texting is extremely useful when you're with a group of people. You can carry on a private conversation by sending text messages. This way, you can keep your business to yourself and you won’t disturb anyone around you

When we're too lazy to walk across the hall to talk to someone, we text them. When we want to avoid the awkward silences that occur during phone calls, we turn to texting.

Ultimately, texting has transformed the way we communicate just like the way AIM did a decade ago. Even after so many years, AIM is still as popular as ever. So texting seems like a trend that's here to stay.