Unified Communications Featured Article

British Artist Believes People Want To Read 12 Years of Her Text Messages


July 14, 2011

In case you’re the sort of person who believes that the goal of life is as much attention as possible – either negative, positive or neutral (and we know there are lots of such people, or reality television would have died 10 minutes after it was invented) – you might want to consider publishing the story of your life.

In text messages.

UK artist Tracey Moberly has apparently saved every text message she has sent since 1999, and apparently believes we are all dying to read them. Moberly believes that text messaging is a legitimate outlet of expression (and not just a tool to remind your spouse to pick up a quart of milk on the way home, like the rest of us). She has compiled the texts – all 12 years of them – into a new book called Text-Me-Up! To make them more readable, she has arranged them into a sort of autobiography, writes Mike Wehner for Yahoo Tech.

The book begins in Manchester, England when Moberly finds herself a single parent following the breakdown of a “long-term tumultuous relationship and marriage. It follows accounts of her life and others through the tales of people’s text messages she’s received. At the same time Tracey weaves in another narrative of psychogeographical histories and places in the worlds of both popular and unpopular culture in Manchester and London.”

If your eyes haven’t begun to glaze over yet, good for you. 

Wehner, for his part, comments that although Moberly’s profession and life experiences might make her a better candidate than most for such a venture, “we can’t help but wonder if simple bursts of text will be enough to hold our attention for a full 12 years of daily updates.”

Do we, actually, really need to wonder or are we pretty sure that something like this is the height of self-absorbed navel gazing and its novelty would wear off by the middle of the second page?

“Text messages are like little sugar rushes of contact, postcards for the people’s cyberspace,” says Moberly.

And as we all know, more than a little sugar is bad for you.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.



Tracey Schelmetic is a contributing editor for unified communications. To read more of Tracey's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell




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