Changing communication, affecting English

Sydney Durham, Staff Reporter
January 20, 2012
Filed under Student Life

Texting has brought conveniences to society, but it has also created problems and conflicts. Texting makes communicating with friends, family and co-workers easier, but some people choose to do so at the wrong time, like while driving. The way people, especially teenagers, talk and write has changed into what seems like a whole new language over last five years.

G2g, ttyl. Teenagers are the creators of the texting language and they have made texting quick and easy. Since most people don’t take the time to put in punctuation or capitalization when texting, and they use poor sentence structure, sentences have become much shorter and simpler.

Teachers nationwide participated in a poll in 2009 about texting, its effect on grammar and the ways it affects students during school. About 45% of the teachers polled responded, “Yes, I believe students are carrying over the writing habits they pick up through text messages into school assignments.” Over 30% of them said, “No, I believe students can write one way to their friends and another way in class. They keep the two methods separate.” The other 19% of the voters chose, “Maybe, although text messaging may have some impact on how students write. I don’t think it is a significant problem.”

 “As [students] are building their foundational writing skills in high school, I do believe [texting] affects their writing. As they progress, they learn more about audience and when it is appropriate to use text-speak and when it is not,” said English teacher Ms. Carrie Honaker.

“Texting bypasses basic rules of punctuation, capitalization and spelling and once ingrained it is difficult to retrain students in correct mechanics,” said Ms. Honaker. Once texting lingo is used, it is sometimes hard for people to remember where to use commas and colons and how to spell certain words. A national telephone poll said that 64% people between the ages of 12 to 17 admitted to using “breezy shortcuts and symbols commonly in their school assignments.”

Texting is a huge part of teenagers’ lives; the average teenager sends about 1,742 text messages a month. A poll taken in 2009 stated that about 75% of teenagers between the ages of 12-17 own cell phones, but in 2004 only 45% of teenagers had cell phones.

When most teenager text, they use abbreviations like “lol”,” ttyl”, and the letter u instead of you, but because of this new lingo, people may forget grammar rules. Michael Schmitt (12) said, “It doesn’t really [make me make more mistakes in writing] but for some people it is just natural to them and they have to pay attention and fix it.”

Things such as apostrophes, colons and semi-colons are often forgotten or skipped with texting. Since teenagers exclude these marks, it may be harder for them to remember all the rules and places for when they need to use these symbols in writing.

 “[Texting] could make me make more mistakes in writing, but I don’t really think about it,” said Kaytii Ganley (11).

Using texting lingo when speaking can also be interpreted by some as lazy, or even uneducated. “I hear some people say ‘lol’ and other abbreviations when they talk, which makes some people seem ignorant,” said Kaytii.  

“I hear “j.k.” or “i.d.k.” fairly often in my classes,” added Mrs. Honaker.

Comments

14 Responses to “Changing communication, affecting English”

  1. Avery Trent on January 20th, 2012 3:13 pm

    I feel like there is a time and a place for the text lingo and teens just need to make sure they aren’t using it in their english classes and for formal papers and assignments. I do find it helpful in texts and emails when in a hurry.

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  2. Stephanie on January 27th, 2012 4:20 pm

    I think it’s crazy when people use “text lingo” because some people text wayyy too much. It’s all they do and they never stop that is ridiculous I think. Teens need to learn how to separate texting language from English and “real life”

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  3. Courtney on February 7th, 2012 1:49 pm

    It’s surprising how much are world has changed. It seems that 5 years ago people were not focused on what is happening on their electronics. I agree on how much texting has changed writing and grammer.

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  4. Morgan on March 2nd, 2012 1:01 pm

    I think texting affects some student more than others in their school work. It really just depends on the individual person

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  5. Aatik Pancholi on March 2nd, 2012 1:10 pm

    This seems kind of normal to me, because if you look back at english before the nineteenth century, their english has no slang or slur to it. I guess if this continues, the kids of the next generation will look at us like we were weird for talking like how we do today.

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  6. Yi Chen on March 2nd, 2012 3:23 pm

    Texting might be good, used in communicating quickly but if you are writing for something important youo shouldn’tuse texting lingo. I think texting is fun when you are online or cell phones.

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  7. Ann on March 2nd, 2012 3:27 pm

    I agree, I think that school writing can be affected by texting lingo that some students use. I think students should realize that they cannot write the same way as they do in texts and pay more attention to how they write in school.

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  8. Jenny on March 6th, 2012 9:54 am

    As long as teenagers know their limit as to know where they would use text language and where not to use it, i think it’s a good thing

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  9. Dimitri Young on March 6th, 2012 9:57 am

    Honstly texting is the new “cool” or”popular” sensation in this generation. It’s a faster way to communicate. I think teens should text what ever style they please just not on a English essay in class.

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  10. Ben C. on March 6th, 2012 11:51 am

    I think texting is pretty cool nowadays with these touch screens and what not. What were we doing before this?

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  11. Ryan on March 6th, 2012 12:00 pm

    Text lingo can come to be very useful when you’re in a hurry. Students just need to know when to use it and when no to.

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  12. Ryan on March 6th, 2012 12:01 pm

    Text lingo can come to be very useful when you’re in a hurry. Students just need to know when to use it and when not to.

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  13. tyler on March 6th, 2012 1:35 pm

    texting has changed everyone who has a phone. while when we change, it is bad, but can also be good.

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  14. Savannah Dayberry on March 6th, 2012 1:51 pm

    It does not effect me when i need to write an english paper. People should know when to use correct grammer and spelling and when they can use texting language.

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