Why Are Your Read Receipts On?

By Liat Clark
Alright, everyone. It’s time to talk about read receipts. ✔✔

(Is it pronounced “red” receipts? “Reed” receipts? I’m honestly not sure, but either way, they need to be discussed.)

We all know the frustration of being left on read. If I texted you, it’s because I wanted to get a quick response. If I wanted to wait a week for you to reply, I would’ve mailed you a letter. That way, at least you could experience the joy of receiving mail. I want that for you! 📬

AND we all know the temporary (or even permanent) bliss of ignoring someone you don’t want to answer! Sometimes I’ve opened the message without meaning to and I’m not ready to respond. Sometimes I just have no intention of ever responding (don’t @ me). Either way, I’ve seen it, I’ve read it, and that’s where I’d like the story to end. But the other person is not on the same page as me. 😬

So honestly, why would anyone keep their read receipts on??

Once upon a time, I was scandalized by the thought of turning them off. HOW will I know if I am being ignored? I must know, so I can be properly and justly incensed at the lack of response! 😠

But turning read receipts off has been like taking the mental health day we all know we need and don’t have time for. In fact, two Northern Illinois University researchers published a study in the February 2016 issue of the “Stress and Health” journal, in which they found that college-aged students who reported feeling the pressure to stay connected, particularly those who juggled class and work, were prone to feeling burnt out, having poor sleeping habits, lacking focus, and having less self-control.  

By turning off read receipts, I was able to minimize the (somewhat perceived) pressure of the social expectation of responding as soon as I’ve seen the message. This is not to say that there is anything wrong with responding quickly or immediately to texts! The problem arises, however, when we feel that we must answer immediately lest we offend the other person, and respond at the expense of engaging in other activities. I didn’t need that negativity in my life, and neither do you.

So let’s hash this out right now:

Do you have your read receipts on?


We’ll be posting the results on Facebook and Insta so vote now and stay tuned!

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