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Social media changing English: but we’re textlexic

by on 5 Oct, 2012

The importance of social media is rammed home today by a survey by OnePoll.  It shows that over half of people in the UK use social media at least once a day.  Nearly a third use it several times a day.

Social media use high, says OnePoll

Two incidents this week support this finding.  I’m in a Korean restaurant  for lunch on Tuesday and 7 young people came in.  There was a lot of chatter over the menus and ordering.  Then absolute silence as each got out their digital device of choice and plunged in for 10 minutes.

Game coming to ETC

Another on Thursday.  The UEL games-building lab, Ludology, communicates between its members via Facebook.  They create a new group for every project.   I was there to see how ETC’s games project is coming along.  We are having them build online games for us.  You should see the first results on our website at the end of the month.  How did I want to be informed of the progress of the project, I was asked.  Email, I said.  We often use FB, said the leader of the lab.  But I’m sticking to email.

Textlexic

Social media is so embedded in our habits now that it is changing the English language.   All of those short forms: but lots of people don’t understand them or get them wrong.   There’s even a new term for it: Textlexic.    58% of people don’t know what a lot of them mean.   That makes for poor communications, and only for self expression.  Here’s a useful guide.  BBFN.

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