“Omg lol c u l8tr”
The average person will most likely be able to decipher that message because modern technology has given to the masses what was once available to a select few: a cell phone.
I remember in middle school, my dad would carry around what looked like the wireless phone in our house but was actually a bulky cell phone (now essentially an artifact) he had in case of emergencies.
Anyone who would like to see an example of this archaic reminder of the past can watch the 1990 film, Pretty Woman.
Now, I walk into an AT&T store to find parents buying their son, who looked to be 10 year old, a Blackberry Torch.
Now, there might be a hint of envy there since even I don’t own one, but I can’t help but think that their son probably doesn’t have to worry about school or business-related emails he would have to read immediately. When I was a little bit older than him, we had pagers for whatever reason and we thought that was the coolest gadget to have. Fast-forward to now and the younger generations even speak as if they’re texting.
I remember walking one of my dogs near a middle school and one student yells out, “O-M-G, your dog is so cute.” Would it really hurt to actually say, “Oh my God?”
Acronyms make sense when texting since it saves time, but in real conversations they are just annoying and kind of sad.
“Textspeak” is now a part of everyday life and is slowly replacing the art of conversation since most people don’t actually use the phone to speak with someone as much as they do to text. Professors from middle school and even college complain that students are too distracted in class because they are always on their cellphones.
Younger generations can’t notice the shift and even our generation is guilty of “text overload,” and yet more and more, I find that textspeak is slowly replacing proper grammar for some.
I used to tutor a 15-year-old who could not spell to save his life. He’d become so accustomed to textspeak that he couldn’t notice the difference anymore. His excuse? Spell-check. He’d tell me it didn’t matter because spell check would automatically correct the words (at least the ones it could decipher).
The problem for me isn’t our use of technology, but the increasing dependence we have developed. I admit to using textspeak at times, and even I forget how to spell some words but younger generations are likely to grow up with this.
It’s no surprise why more and more students don’t do well on the English assessment exams. I am not saying that textspeak is the sole reason for this, nor am I saying that we should not use it sparingly; all I’m saying is maybe we should spend less time texting and more time actually paying attention in class. Also, AFAIC*, talking shld b an AFZ*
*As far as I’m concerned
*Acronym free zone