Since I’m out and about, I’m stealing other people’s blogs. Well, I got permission. My friend over at Textual Relations sums up this rant nicely. If you like it, go stop by and say hello. He has many, many more rants. And he’s British, and I like people that put “u”s in words. (They’re my favourite…) 😉
If you know me, you know there’s someone in my family (cough*cousin*cough) that isn’t a top tier speller like I was due to this phenomenon.
27 03 2007
What is it with today’s youth and their inability to string a coherent sentence together? I hate to sound like an old man, but when a 26 year old is bemoaning “today’s youth” you really have to wonder what the hell is wrong with the current generation. I appreciate that with SMS there’s a requirement for shorthand, it’s not only convenient (particularly in the days before predictive texting where you had to bash the same key repeatedly to get the letter or symbol of choice) but economical. Most of the time by shortening individual words you’re able to fit more into one text and cut down the number of messages you need to send, thus saving money. Although given the advance in technology (bringing with it predictive text) and the increasingly competitive offers on the marketplace (many packages now including free texts) neither of these excuses is quite as watertight as perhaps they once were. But nonetheless, they’re valid.
Yet what I fail to understand is why it has to be used on the internet. Even when texting I use it only as a last resort, now that we have predictive texting I usually begin by attempting to write the message out in full using proper English, and only if the message cuts off, or I have more to add, do I then go back and alter parts into “textspeak”. What’s worse is that what was once “textspeak” is now “netspeak”, as if to apply the same shorthand from use on SMS, where it is logical to do so, to the internet, where it is not, is somehow just natural evolution. This is no minor issue either, it’s not all about “good grammar” or anything quite so snobby as that. I fear for a world where the “netspeak” generation actually run things because you can bet it will be a world where the shortcut will prevail. Forget road safety and having a safe working environment, because that would require doing things properly. No, instead expect a world where because everyone is taking a shortcut, people get hurt, or worse yet, die.
Yes, you heard right people, “netspeak” costs lives. So if not for me, if not for yourself (and your own literacy), please, for the sake of humanity, cease being so lazy and actually try using the language skills you’re blessed with.