Siblings Communicate Primarily Through Missed Call Notifications

A new study out of the University of Minnesota has confirmed that texting has finally been surpassed as siblings’ main form of communication, the top spot now claimed by missed call notifications.


“We were all shocked at the results of the study,” said Research Assistant Kylie Waterson. “None of us were under the impression that actual phone calls would be the primary way siblings communicate with each other, but we were all expecting it to be something like BeReal or Snapchat messages, not missed call notifications.”


Dr. Maya James, Lead Researcher on the study, agreed, saying, “Turns out siblings are calling each other more than we thought! It’s just that no one’s picking up.”


While the study did indicate that siblings do largely use apps like BeReal, Snapchat, and Instagram to communicate with each other, nothing topped calling each other, missing the call, calling back, and then missing that call as well.


“It’s how I know my siblings care about me,” said one respondent, when asked why they chose this method to communicate with their siblings. “Every time I see a missed call notification from my sister, I know she was thinking about me. And I call her so she knows I was thinking about her. But not to talk to her. I don’t need to hear about how her job’s going.”


According to the study, .01% of respondents chose actual phone conversations as the primary way they communicate with their siblings.


“The notification is pretty much the whole goal,” Dr. James explained. “It says so many things with just a simple red dot. ‘I’m thinking about you,’ ‘You mean so much to me,’ ‘I’m scared for the future, but feel braver with you by my side,’ – these are all things siblings can glean from a missed call notification, but would never say to each other out loud in a million years.”


The study’s findings were of particular interest to people who grew up as only children.


“I always thought a missed call notification just meant that I missed a call,” said only child, Maria Lowe. “What other signs have I been missing in my day-to-day life because I don’t have siblings? What other beauty am I blind to?”



The study concluded by saying that even though missed call notifications are the most popular way for siblings to communicate with each other, they aren’t actually the best.


Dr. Maya explained, saying, “That distinction is reserved for swiping up on your siblings’ Instagram story and saying ‘where r u?’”