Post by cmpunkfan619 on Mar 31, 2012 19:27:16 GMT -5
How do you feel the internet has changed the English Language? Do you think it's a good or a bad thing?
I was hoping to get an opinion from someone within the EMA community for my final project in my Digital Rhetorics class. If you'd like to take part, please respond. I can blur out your name if you'd like, but I'd really like to be able to present some thoughts from this forum. I've been following the EMA tumblr for months, and the people who contribute seem to have a perspective that, to this point, hasn't had enough presence in my documentary.
If there is any interest or are any questions, let me know. This is one of those "no wrong answer" things that always seems to have a wrong answer, but this one seriously doesn't have a wrong answer. If anyone has any interest or questions, please let me know.
(Oh no. Sorry for telling you this was a good place to come... I can't believe no one else has answered!)
Anyways, on to the question.
I think that there are several answers. An obvious (and shallow) way that it has changed our language is the increased frequency in abbreviations and acronyms. They're not just for texting and IMing anymore--have you ever heard someone say "lol" out loud? I have. After all, they're in our dictionaries now. Our vocabulary certainly has changed, and not necessarily for the worse.
Things get a little more complicated after that. You'd think that with the increase in text-based communication, the general public's written skills would have increased. However, I'm afraid it might have had the opposite effect. People, in their rush to get their thoughts out (or save characters) tend to leave out punctuation, truncate spelling, and drop parts of speech. The saddest thing is, this seems to have bled into any writing they do which should be more formal. I've seen freshmen turn in academic papers with acronyms and more colloquial word usage ("kinda," "gonna") and not notice anything wrong with it. Sure, there are always the exceptions--this community, for example. There are those of us who had a grasp of grammar before the advent of AIM, those of us who care about how we "sound" via text. While I still capitalize and punctuate my text messages, even though I'm working with a phone-sized keyboard and a 160 character limit, there are many more people who post comments like", i dont really like jb but i loveee this songg ( ; ." on youtube, put phrases like “IDE PREFER…” in academic emails, and say things like ”,I dont belive God likes it or he would have never said „theo shell not kill „,” on facebook.
I think that the internet could have been a fantastic tool for increasing literacy, basic writing competency, and a passion for words. However, it seems to have done less to evolve the English language and more to devolve it. Suddenly the internet is a viable source and authority for all things imaginable, leaving many people with improper information and undue confidence in a variety of things, like how to spell "definitely." I think I've lost track of how many times I've seen people defend their incorrect spelling or grammar usage, all because "so-and-so says ____ on their site, so it must be right."
(Yes, all of the quotes in the second full paragraph are things I have personally come across. Let me know if you have any citation issues... not exactly sure how that would work.)
"There is no way that writers can be tamed and rendered civilized. Or even cured." -R. A. Heinlein
"I write for the same reason I breathe - because if I didn't, I would die." -Isaac Asimov
Post by cmpunkfan619 on Apr 4, 2012 15:42:32 GMT -5
Thanks for the reply, Olive. I'm glad you took the time to write this all out for me. It's a perspective that I've not heard from a lot of people so far in my documentation process. I've come across some weird language choices in academic situations before too, but I'd actually never heard of websites promoting improper grammar before. That's a genuine liability.
So would you believe that the internet has had a negative effect on communication?