txt spk, language, education
ive wanted to write a post in txt spk for quite sum time now. not totally txt spk so u cant read it at all, but just 1 where i can shorten things n see how it looks. u c, ive been in correspondance lately with a woman frm sweden who lives in london and who ive been wanting to help get on a translation course.
ive noticed a few things about her which id like to share here, maybe to get a better understanding of her (once ive written it all down).
first of all, in all her emails and msn etc she only uses txt spk. i.e. even if its a written document its just txt speak, not ‘real’ English. its not over the top teenage txt spk, but for instance all the time she uses u to say ‘you’ n stuff like that, so u can still read it but its certainly linguistically wrong! i havent challenged her about it as its quite a touchy subject i think. i mean wot am i gonna say? eh babe can u actually use proper language?
the spk she uses is not totally txt spk, but a weird form of standard english with loads of txt abbreviations thrown in. here are sum of the characteristicsn of her language:
- shortening of words via contraction, often: omission of vowels (example: ‘some’ – ‘sum’; ‘you’ – ‘u’; ‘would’ – ‘wud’)
- poor vocabulary (sum stats of the average use of vocabulary wud b useful here, i.e. how many different words an average spker of English uses)
- poor punctuation (very little understanding of puncutation rules; often, ommision of punctuation mark even tho theyre required)
- absence or incorrect use of apostrophe’s (e.g. it’s will always be written as its, while other times the apostrophe is placed incorrectly)
- general spelling mistakes (alot of spelling mistakes, indicating poor grasp of english)
- absense of structure (longer emails lack structure an its difficult to comprehend what she means sumtimes)
- use of lowercase ‘i’ – she always uses lowercase ‘i’, never uppercase
the funny thing is that she does strike me as quite intelligent, only her language is so rotten and messy that i really dont know if its improvable or not, i.e. within an educational context. theres been stuff on the news where teachers at secondary school get assignments written in half txt speak and thats what it must look like.
id luv to be able to help her somehow but dont think i can. ive always taken it for granted that ppl know how to write relatively well, but maybe thats because ive only ever corresponded with those that can. maybe its me being snobbish, but it does somewhat illustrate the importance of a gud education imho.
the reason why i wanted to write this post in txt spk (yes, all the errors are intentionel :P ) is to demonstrate that language, to me, is very adaptable to whatever u want it to do. its not a reflection of any exterior reality. its a tool that u can use in all sorts of contexts, and the way u use it conveys a lot of information about u. so, use it wisely. use txt speak if u want n it makes ur life easier, but remember to switch back to proper English if u want to make urself understood.