Image via Shutterstock
You’re probably getting mooned right now and you don’t even realize it. It might be coming from a friend, family member, your spouse or your side piece.
“Sometimes, the last thing I want to do when I get home is look at my phone,” explains Jenna, a 25-year-old personal assistant. “I moon everyone for at least 3 hours a night.”
Named after the crescent moon symbol signifying Do Not Disturb, “mooning” refers to the act of putting a temporary muzzle on a text message sender or conversation. The Do Not Disturb mode silences the beeps, bongs and calls for action from a sender. If an individual is looking for complete Zen, they might even DND the entire phone.
One of the main goals of every technological advancement is to make the life of the user easier. Bell invented the telephone so that humans could communicate over long distances. Over time, the phone moved from our living rooms into our vehicles and then into our pockets. Eventually texting became a widely accepted form of communication.
Here’s the problem though—technology sometimes makes life easier to navigate while simultaneously making the task of being a civilized human extremely more complicated.
If the early phone users didn’t want to talk they ignored the ringing unit on the while and felt little guilt in the act of avoidance. The answering machine changed that dynamic but there was still the get out of jail free card of “I didn’t get the message” or “my machine is wonky as all hell.”
Flash forward to 2016 and an unanswered text is followed by panic and anxiety on both ends of the BING!
- Sender: “Why the hell aren’t they answering?”
- Receiver: “Why the hell are they texting?!?”
If you think texts aren’t dominating your life, ponder the hundreds of messages you sent while operating a car. That incredibly unimportant question and response that could wait until you reached a destination needs to be sent while operating a machine that could kill both you and countless others with one wrong move. Congrats, you mowed down a group of schoolchildren crossing the street but at least your friend got an answer to his fantasy football “start/sit” question.
It’s virtually impossible to ignore a ringing, buzzing, beeping cell phone so the Do Not Disturb calms the chatter for a short while. At least until you pull into your destination.
How To Moon
In case you’re new to mooning (which explains why you’ve read this far), and aren’t even sure how to accomplish it on your device, here’s a quick tutorial on how to set a text conversation to Do Not Disturb.
- Go to the text thread
- Tap on the Details button (the circled i in the top corner)
- Click on the Do Not Disturb option
- Enjoy the silence
Why Moon When You Can Just Ignore?
Completely ignoring a text, or person, is always an option but some people just can’t be that mean. As GQ explains:
“Mooning is a middle ground between the abrupt Band-Aid rip of blocking someone and the slow fade of ignoring someone’s texts.”
“Ignoring seems crueler? Like if you have a read receipt on and you just see the person has completely disregarded your message, that sucks,” said Casey, 26, who recently mooned the girl he was dating after they had a fight.
Who To Moon
Mooning is up to individual discretion but here are a couple people for whom mooning is a much better option than ignoring completely.
I vividly remember saying to myself on numerous occasions, usually after taking a phone call from a parent, how I wished they’d learn to text. So I taught my mom to text. Bad idea. Feel free to DND parents during work, while out at bars or basically any time of day.
Because you just don’t give a fuck about every moment of her day.
If you’re still in contact with an ex you’ve probably got good reason but none good enough to constantly have to talk to her.
They can be a distracting bunch. Especially in a group text. A simple text of “beers tonight?” to a group turns into unwanted pictures of diseased penises and links to scat porn titled “Did you guys see this nasty hit during the game?!?” In fact..
Any Group Text, Ever
Just DND them all.
Sometimes the moon and the silence it provides is so relaxing, the night never ends.
“If I get around to the messages, I get around to them,” Jenna laughs. “I figure if it’s an emergency, I’ll get blown up and notice. Otherwise, it’s probably not that important.”
Editor’s note—It’s never that important.