Believe it or not, texting helps make you truthful. Texting made talking about sensitive subjects much easier than using a phone or speech.

Texting may make communicating easier but it is not without its roadblocks. Because phones store the texts, each conversation is laid out like mini-novels for anyone to read. Despite this visual record, the distance texting causes between subjects actually helped improved honesty.

The results of this texting study had Fredrick Conrad, PhD, from the University Of Michigan Institute Of Research, saying “OMG.” Dr. Conrad believed that the visual record of texting would be too much for individuals to overcome and while it would not make them more dishonest it may prevent a person from being completely honest when responding to a question.

Not only were people more honest when texting, they were also more precise. Researchers believed that the lack of time constraints in responding let people be more exact when giving information instead of giving easy or general responses. Instead of rounding up or down, people would give the actual figure when texting a response to a question.

The study involved 600 iPhone users who were recruited from Craigslist, Google Ads and other websites and were given iStore rewards for participating. Researchers wanted to see if speech or texting affected the truthfulness of an individual.

The participants knew they were being interviewed and other variables such as environment, having people around while answering questions, and if the questions were given by a human or computer were taken into consideration. Some of the questions asked focused on exercise levels, drinking habits, movie viewing habits and the number of songs in their music library.

Participants responding to text were truthful when discussing how many times they exercised or how many days they drank more than five alcoholic beverages in a 30 day timespan than compared to speech responses. Participants were also more exact on the number of movies they watched and the number of songs they had in their library via text than speech.

Texting also improved accuracy when multitasking. Text messaging let people be more precise despite being in a distracting environment when compared to speech responses.

According to the researchers, landlines are becoming a thing of the past. Nearly one in five households only use cellphones and that number is climbing steadily. Texting is becoming the de facto means of communication for young adults and is popular in Europe and Asia, note researchers.

The next time you text a friend a serious, be prepared for some hard truth that may hurt your feelings.

Funding was provided by the National Science Foundation. All data is considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.