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Skype introduces read receipts, but don’t worry, you can disable them

If you want folks to know that you’ve seen their message (and are just choosing to be slow to respond), rejoice! There’s now another medium through which you can exercise your passive-aggressive tendencies (or  just generally let folks know that their messages aren’t going into the void). This week, Skype announced that its latest version (Skype 8.26.76) will finally include “read receipts,” something that has been missing from the video calling service for quite some time.

As their name suggests, read receipts will allow users to see who who has read your messages, though the feature is a bit more sophisticated than the receipts available on, say, your iPhone.

“When someone reads your message, their avatar appears beneath it in Skype chats enabling you to see how far someone has read in the conversation without tapping on every message,” Skype explained in a blog post. “The feature is available in [one on one] conversations and group chats with 20 or fewer people.”

Currently, read receipts are only available for Skype Insiders — those select folks who are especially interested in Skype’s latest and greatest updates. This also means that you’ll only be able to test out the receipts with others who are also Skype Insiders, and who are therefore on the latest Insider build.

Of course, there is a way to turn off read receipts if you would rather not let people know when you have seen their messages. You’ will simply need to go to Settings/Privacy and disable the feature, “and in keeping with the spirit of Invisible mode, read receipts are disabled when you set your presence to Invisible,” Skype added. “However, to see others’ read receipts, you need to have it enabled yourself, too.”

One thing to note — if you mark a conversation or message as unread to remind yourself to go back to it later, the read receipts will not be affected (which is to say that people will still know that you’ve seen the message). So if you start seeing new little heads pop up in your Skype chats in the near future, you’ll know know exactly what those mean.

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