Folium: Texting is Killing Language? via TED

Folium: Texting is Killing Language? via TED

Folium: Texting is Killing Language? via TED
Creative Commons Image via Wikimedia Commons

Folium: Texting is Killing Language? via TED

FYI: A new language is developing among our youth, and many of us, unsurprisingly, are vehemently against it. As a woman who prides herself in grammatical accuracy and a decent vocabulary it would seem appropriate that I would be left with a bitter taste in my mouth after reading a text or comment that is saturated with slang, acronyms, and an absence of punctuation – and I am. In fact, I am far less likely to reply to a text message that includes misspelling, incorrect grammar, or those frustrating acronyms, and I’m sure many of you can relate.

However, if you take a look at language throughout the ages you’ll find that the proper English linguistics we hold so dear to our hearts, were once abhorrently wrong too! Did you know that French, Spanish, and Italian were all derived from what we call Vulgar Latin (not obscene, but common)? The change didn’t happen overnight. All of the variations occurred due to slang words and adaptations over several centuries.

Now, more than ever, we are seeing a rapidly changing language evolve expressly due to technology. Texting and instant messaging have allowed us to shorten our speech, abbreviate it, and even adapt new words into our language while being able to convey and understand meanings more quickly. This creates a more succinct dialect, accommodating the faster paced reality the technological age has catapulted us into.

Linguist John McWhorter supports the idea that, rather than hurting the spoken word, texting is helping to evolve it. Take a look at the video and tell us what you think.

What is your opinion on the popularity of texting, slang, and acronyms used in every day communication? Can you come up with any examples of similar linguistic progression in another dialect?

BTW: Older generations have eternally struggled with the speech patterns of their children. In your studies of modern languages don’t count out verbal evolution!

Alyssa Davis, LEAF Intern


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