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There’s a reason I’ve set my tattered iPhone 6 Plus to go into “Do Not Disturb” mode every night at 10 p.m. It’s not because of the light waking me up. It’s not because I want to ignore phone calls should anything happen to my loved ones at all hours of the night. No, it’s because of one thing and one thing only: group texts.
I consider myself to be a part of two group texts. From my estimates, this is a normal-to-small amount of group texts for one guy to be a part of. And even then, things can get overwhelming. When it’s 11:43 p.m. and your phone is vibrating on the bedside table, you have to call it quits. But when you wake up the next morning and see you have 63 unread messages? There’s simply no better way to start your day than with a recap of the night while sipping a cup of pour-over joe.
Unfortunately, with great group texts come great responsibility. Should you abuse the group text or compromise the group text, well, it’s time you see yourself out. Avoid these pillars of shittiness and remain the MVP of the group.
The group text is a sacred place free of judgment, societal norms, and morality. Much like you wouldn’t judge a coworker on the shitty ideas they bring to a conference room brainstorm, you can’t judge a guy for tossing out an off-color joke in hopes of getting a laugh. These things happen, and whether or not it’s okay isn’t for us to decide. That’s within the jurisdiction of the friend group.
But if these flash-in-the-pan comments get leaked via screenshots? Well, that’s the beginning of a paper trail that you don’t want to see the end of. Apple might as well disable the screenshot function for group texts with more than four people in them. It’s simply irresponsible. Hell, even a Snapchat-style “Brad just took a screenshot” would help matters so you know what that piece of shit is up to on the side. Fucking Brad.
Showing their significant other.
There’s a reason these conversations are going down in the palms of men and not at couple’s dinners. Some things just shouldn’t be shared with the greater group, and sometimes some venting simply needs to occur. Once a significant other has their grips on damning evidence that these guys are all semi-pieces of shit, well, it’s over.
Yes, there are screenshots of Instagram models. Of course, there are ghosts of girlfriends past that get brought up. And mmhmm, there will be some late night pervy comments that some people wish could be unsent come morning. I’d say “guys will be guys,” but honestly, you can’t even try to justify these things. Girls, conversely, say the same equally disgusting things. Don’t act like you don’t.
Complete and utter inactivity.
Silence is sketchy. When your boy Spencer is eerily silent for the better part of a month, you can jump to the following conclusions: he’s over your friend group, he’s been getting his dick kicked in at work, or he’s dead. Either way, that’s not the type of person you want in the group text. One monkey don’t stop the show and when Spencer is being mum about some topics he needs to weigh in on, it’s time to establish a side text and start talking about an exit strategy.
I’m not a double agent but I’ve watched enough Bond movies to know that it’s easiest to lie when you say nothing at all. Spencer’s complete and utter lack of contribution screams that he wants out. Sure, he may have a half-hearted “haha” here and there, but that’s just to stay relevant. Get him out.
Pouring too much gasoline on the fire.
Group texts breed hot takes. That’s why they’re there. In the same way Aziz tries out material at small comedy clubs, you’ve got to try out your best stuff in the comfortable confines of an iMessage. But once your takes start getting hot enough that they’re scorching the rest of the guys? Well, people are going to start talking behind your back.
Don’t get me wrong – tossing your friends in the frying pan is why we’re all here. But once the Trump/Hillary takes start taking over the conversation from sports, how bad your hangover is, and girls, that’s when you need to reassess the group strategy and make some cuts. Don’t be blatant about it, but maybe fire up a new iMessage with a playful title that doesn’t include the guilty party. He’ll survive.
“No, but seriously, guys, this Google Pixel 2 phone is really incredible,” he’ll say. Hell, maybe he’s right, but no one else is willing to find out. The second the texts start going from blue to green, that’s when you need to start eliminating people from your life.
And it’s not just the color, either. It’s the reactions, the stickers, and the ease of messages going through as well. SMS messages are a thing of the past along with BBMs and T9 texting. Android Guy and Screenshot Brad can go live a happy life together with silent Spencer. Their new group text is essentially the Table 39 in the back corner of a country club wedding while your group text is out on the dance floor screaming “Shout!” Be that group text. .