Automating STOP to End

My friends Sunah Suh, Anthony Hersey, and I finally figured out the magic incantations needed to automate sending “STOP” to political text messages. Setting it up is completely non-obvious, so I’ll walk through it step-by-step.

Note that this is for iOS only. If someone with an Android phone wants to write up their process, I’d be happy to link to it.

Also, this was done on iOS 17.4. Surely this process will change some day. If you notice something is off, let me know and I’ll update it.

Shortcuts home screen First, open the Shortcuts app and tap the Automation tab at the bottom.

Automation home screen Tap the plus (+) in the top right corner.

Create automation search page Start typing "Message" in the search bar, and select Message.

Automation When screen On the When page, hit Choose next to Message Contains.

Automation When Message Contains screen Type in the text to look for, such as "STOP to end". It appears to be case-insensitive.

Automation When screen selecting Run Immediately Hit Done and back on the When page, select Run Immediately. Then tap Next in the top-right corner.

When I Get a Message Containing... screen Now select New Blank Automation.

When I Get a Message Containing... Add Action screen Under Next Action Suggestions, you should see Send Message. (If not, hit Add Action and search for "Send Message".) Tap Send Message.

Send Message Action screen Tap on the Message field and type "STOP".

Send Message Recipients Shortcut Input Now comes the first tricky part. Hold down (long press) on Recipients and select Shortcut Input. (If instead it pops open a "To:" page, you didn't hold down long enough. Cancel and try again.)

Send Message Recipients Shortcut Input Sender Now the next tricky bit. Tap the Shortcut Input field and select Sender, then hit Done.

That's it! Now repeat this for different variations of "STOP to...." ("STOP to quit", "STOP2END", etc.)