Why is it that many chat applications, the chat messages you send yourself are often highlighted with color, whereas the messages of the person you are talking to are often grey & seemingly lower in hierarchy?

Isn't the message of the other person more important than your own message, as the content of this message is the reason why you're visiting the chat, not to read your own message again.

Is it because it makes it easier to make the difference between you vs. the rest in group-chat?


  1. Whatsapp
  2. Facebook Messenger

Yes, this is about reducing the cognitive load. Most chat services support group chats. It's much easier to scan and less of a cognitive load if only your own messages are highlighted, rather than the majority of the messages.

And another bonus of having your own messages coloured (like iMessenger): the colour of the chat bubble can tell you how the message was sent. Either through SMS or through internet. This is useful if you're on a plan, though most people have unlimited SMS by now and it matters less and less.

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