Skype recently introduced read receipts to its multiplatform video, audio, and text chat application. Like read receipts for other services, Skype read receipts show you which text messages your contacts have seen, and allow your contacts to see which messages you’ve seen, too.
This is helpful for letting you and your contacts know who’s up to date with the latest messages, but it also imposes an obligation that some users may not want to assume. Beyond the basic privacy issues, sometimes you may not want someone to know you’ve seen a certain message if you don’t have time (or don’t want to) address the message’s subject right away. Having your contact(s) see that you’ve “read” a message creates, fairly or not, an expectation that you’ll soon respond or act on it.
Skype read receipts are available in version 8 of the application for mobile and desktop platforms, and they’re enabled by default. For those who don’t want the feature, here’s how to turn off Skype read receipts.
Turn Off Skype Read Receipts for Mobile
- Launch the Skype app, sign in if necessary, and tap on your user picture at the top of the screen.
- Find and select Settings.
- From the Settings menu, select Messaging.
- Tap the toggle button to turn off Send read receipts.
Turn Off Skype Read Receipts for Desktop
- Launch the Skype app, sign in if necessary, and click the three dots to the right of your user information. Select Settings from the drop-down menu that appears.
- Select Messaging from the list on the left.
- Use the toggle button to turn off Send read receipts.
With Skype read receipts disabled, you’ll still see read receipts for any contacts that have the feature enabled, but they won’t be able to see which messages you’ve read. If you’re not seeing read receipts for contacts you expect, note that there are some limitations for the feature. First, your contacts will need to be using a version of Skype that supports read receipts. They also need to be logged in with a visible presence setting. Conversations with groups of more than 20 people also won’t show read receipts. Finally, you won’t see them from anyone who has blocked you, even if you both continue to be participants in a multiparty conversation.
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