To prevent messages appearing on your screen while you
are working, you can use the mesg command, which
lets you accept or refuse messages sent to you via write. Type:
to prevent messages from being sent to your terminal, and:
to accept them.
To find out your current status ("y" or "n"), type mesg on its own. To find out whether other users will accept messages sent via write, type finger. The display will be something like:
Login Name TTY Idle When Office josephh Joseph Hulot 001 Mon 14:29 susant Susan Tzarcha *002 3 Mon 14:29 peterp Peter Piper 003 Mon 14:29 perry Perry Patetic *005 Mon 14:31The asterisk () next to the TTY number indicates that the user is not accepting messages. Messages sent by root ignore the mesg n setting.
If you are using mail or vi and a message arrives that corrupts your screen, you can type <Ctrl>L to redraw the screen. See also the finger(C) and mesg(C) manual pages.