The Herald's 'Text in the City'
May 18th 2006 11:20
An article published in The Sydney Morning Herald in 2003 entitled ‘Text and the city’ reported “SMS may be the perfect tool for ‘romantic texting’, but it means flirting is no longer free. Sending such messages as C4U ("crazy for you") or W2BAI ("want to be an item?") will cost the sender up to 25 cents a time - a boon for the carriers, which have become the modern-day Cupids. Virgin Mobile, which estimates 70 per cent of its customers are under 30, charges only 10 cents when both the sender and the recipient are Virgin subscribers. In a recent "love poll", Virgin found 90 per cent of its teenage users flirt by texting, 53 per cent use SMS to ask someone out, and 25 per cent thought SMS would help them "score". Virgin has even released a guide to textual flirting: "The Joy of Text", and hosts regular SMS "love-in" events. In April, the telco will start a dedicated mobile phone dating service in the UK, Flirt Alert, similar to Vodafone's Luv Shack. A more sinister side to the developments, though, is the presence of mobile phone "stalkers": being pestered by someone sending unwanted advances.”
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