by Alex Harris
If you aren’t aware of the “messaging boom” we are currently living in, you are either living under a rock or using a Motorola DynaTAC 8000X. Look it up.
The point is, messaging is not new. While it is true that billions of messages are sent worldwide every hour (over 1 billion per hour on WhatsApp alone), messaging is as old as humanity itself. It is only the scale, speed, and mode of messaging that has changed.
With that in mind, we celebrate the top 10 most significant messages in history:
No push notifications or alert sounds here. Soldiers in Acient China used smoke signals to alert other soldiers of enemy attacks.
9. “Hello from Earth”
Not limited to planet earth, the Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex sent text messages from around the world via a 70m antenna into deep space. The messages were sent to Gliese 581d – a planet believed to be able to support life. A read receipt has yet to be confirmed.
8. “It’s a DELIBERATE attack – a second plane just flew into the second tower”
From an unknown source, this text, disclosed in Wikileaks, was on one of the first messages to confirm the events of September 11th were not accidental.
The message in a bottle represents one of the world’s worst innovation aside from the Microsoft Zune. Legend has it that Chunosuke Matsuyama sent out a message in 1784, asking for rescue after a shipwreck. The bottle washed ashore…151 years later.
6. “Don’t be scared … it is me. Love you and miss you.”
A/S/L? Before AOL Instant Messenger spawned a generation of introverts, the first “AIM” message was sent by Ted Leonsis to his wife on Jan. 6, 1993. His wife responded, “Wow … this is so cool!”
5. “SOS SOS CQD CQD Titanic. We are sinking fast. Passengers are being put into boats. Titanic.”
In the early morning of April 15, 1912, the Titanic used its onboard telegram system to send its last known message in a desperate attempt at rescue.
4. “Merry Christmas”
Neil Papworth sent the world’s very first text message on December 3 1992. The 22-year-old Brit used his computer to send the message “Merry Christmas” to an Orbitel 901 mobile phone in the first official test of the technology.
3. “That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind,”
One of the most famous messages of all-time is one of the most misquoted. Transmitted via radio on July 20th, 1969, as he became the first man to set foot on earth, Neil Armstrong stated that the small step was taken by “a” man but this is almost always forgotten by history.
2. “just setting up my twttr”.
Jack Dorsey, the co-founder of Twitter, had the honor of composing the world’s very first “Tweet”. It has since been retweeted over 62,000 times. Today, Twitter counts over 6,000 tweets per second.
1. “The British are coming!”
On a cold night in April 1775, Paul Revere warned of an incoming attack by the British via the world’s fastest messaging system at the time: horseback.