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It's OK to keep AIMing

timothy posted more than 7 years ago | from the dat's-what-u-think-lol dept.

305

fooby12 writes "According to the Univeristy of Toronto instant messaging does not hurt the grammar of the people who use it. From the article: "With 80% of Canadian teenagers using instant messaging and adopting its unique linguistic shorthand, many teachers and parents are concerned about the medium's potential to corrupt kids' grammar. But instant messaging doesn't deserve its bad reputation as a spoiler of syntax, suggests a new study from the University of Toronto.""

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305 comments

NO WAI! (3, Funny)

RobertB-DC (622190) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820164)

My first thought, of course, was:

  {o,o}
  |)__)
  -"-"-
O RLY?

{o.o}
|)_(|
-"-"-
YA RLY

  {o,o}
  (__(|
  -"-"-
NO WAI!

(Courtesy of the usual suspects [wikipedia.org] )

Re:NO WAI! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820593)

stupid article requires stuoid replies like this. Move along, nothing to see here.

Bad terminology (4, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820165)

What changes when people write on Messenger is mainly spelling. Spelling is part of the lexicon, and the lexicon is not "grammar". Grammar consists of phonology, morphology, and syntax, and I've never seen any of those parts of the English language being butchered by netspeak.

ROFLMAO. (1)

mmell (832646) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820213)

The last letter of that acronym represents the word 'off', correct? That is a preposition.

The ending of a sentence with a preposition is a practice up with which I will not put. - W. Churchill (?)

Then again, it's not like the people in question were ever likely to have great skills at written composition, is it?

Re:ROFLMAO. (4, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820291)

The attribution of that quotation to Churchill is apocryphal. Furthermore, Churchill had no training in linguistics. If he did, he would have known that English has been placing prepositions at the end of sentences for centuries, for they are no longer strict prepositions but really coverbs much as like in, say, Hungarian. Also, it is the point of linguistics to be descriptive (explaining what's heard on the street without judgement), not prescriptive (telling people how to speak). You should really pick up Trudgill & Bauer's Language Myths [amazon.com] (New York: Penguin, 1999) and you'll see just how naive your comment was.

You don't seem to have much of a sense of humor. (2, Informative)

mmell (832646) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820311)

I'll try <HUMOR> tags in the future.

Re:ROFLMAO. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820351)

I prefer this one:
"You ended that sentence with a preposition, bastard." - Colonel Jack O'Neill, Stargate SG-1

Re:ROFLMAO. (1)

andrewman327 (635952) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820536)

You raise a very valid point. Sure there is horrible grammar online, but many of its practitioners are not imbued with silver tongues in their offline lives. There does not seem to be a very strong emphesis on grammar outside of English class.

Re:ROFLMAO. (1)

XenoRyet (824514) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820606)

I'd even go so far as to say the only place grammar is emphasised is in English class. The most common reaction of someone who has had their online grammar called into question is: "LOLZ this isnt teh sch00l nub!!!1!!one!"

The study mentioned in the blurb may show that it doesn't affect their offline grammar, but with 8 out of 10 executives at my company being compleatly unable to put together a readable email, I think online grammar should be made a priority as well.

Re:Bad terminology (4, Informative)

iMaple (769378) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820251)

And even if it does change the language a little bit, thats to be expected. Languages (esp English isnt static) so this is just part of the normal evolution process of the language(albeit a little quicker than the past). Personally I do have a hard time reading netspeak but then it does remind me of Chaucer sometimes :)

eg.
That it was May thus dremed me
In time of love and jollite
That al thyng gynneth waxen gay
For there is neither busk nor hay
In May that it nyl shrouded ben,
And it with new leves wryen.
These greves eke recoveren grene,
That dry in wynter ben to sen,
And the erthe waxeth proude withal
For swete dewes that on it falle . . .

Maybe thats why the can still do well in their English classes.

Re:Bad terminology (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820394)

At least Chaucer had a larger vocabulary than "r u hawt u want 2 cybr?" and knew that "LOL" was not a punctuation mark, much less a full stop.

Re:Bad terminology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820522)

I'm not implying that every IM chatter is a Chaucer ... lol Just that reading netspeak takes an effort which is comparable to what I require for Chaucer (I know a lot of ppl do read archaic English quickly, I cant. I take ridiculously long). And I'm not comparing the aftereffects (pleasure) of Chaucer with some random netspeak msg :)

Re:Bad terminology (3, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820277)

I've never seen any of those parts of the English language being butchered by netspeak.

Because it arrived prebutchered.

S'ok, if you think it's bad now, you should have seen what was happening to it in the 1500s.

KFG

It also teaches typing (1)

TheAxeMaster (762000) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820366)

I never really learned to type well until I got into IM. I even tried the typing classes in school, still couldn't do it well. Only after extended use did I notice that my typing speed went up dramatically. I tend to think that it was because it was something I wanted to do (talk to friends), not something I HAD to do (typing class). Grammar didn't suffer at all, though I started much later than kids do now (late high school vs. 5th grade). I'd say as long as the schools are teaching them good grammar, it will come through in the typing.

Re:It also teaches typing (1)

dosius (230542) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820465)

All in when you start. I'd say if kids start IM'ing before they've developed proper English, IM-lish is going to taint their written English, but if they've developed proper English first - 5th grade's long enough I think - no problem, they should be able to tell the difference; like reality/fantasy separation - if you reach that point and can't tell the diff, something's seriously wrong with you.

-uso.

Re:Bad terminology (1)

Dan Slotman (974474) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820559)

I think that poor spelling and grammar derives from a lack of reading. Most people I know spend more time watching television than reading, and it shows in their written narrative abilities. I believe that IM, blogging and forums show the effects of the problem, rather than being the affecters of the problem. I've read some forum posts that were incomprehensible due to a numbing union of horrific spelling, abbreviation, zero punctuation, and ommitted grammar.

TFA is absltly rght. (0, Troll)

mmell (832646) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820169)

Oh, BTW - 1st pst.

OMG, I am so 1337! C my l337 grammer skilz!

Re:TFA is absltly rght. (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820346)

OMG, I am so 1337! C my l337 grammer skilz!

A perfectly lucid sentence.

KFG

Instant msg-ing messes with grammar? As if! lol! (4, Funny)

Neoncow (802085) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820175)

The title of the story has it all wrong. 'lol' does not require an exclamation mark. It is implied. These lingusts should learn how to IM. lol

To the Contrary! (3, Informative)

dshaw858 (828072) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820186)

I've used AIM and IRC excessively in the past few years, and it has led me to getting a nearly perfect score on my English SAT exams. Just because some p30p3l tlk lik this dosnt meen that omg all of u r going 2 be liek th1s. Some people may actually improve based on the widespread use of IMs, just like emails or passing notes in class...

- dshaw

Re:To the Contrary! (1)

ArcticFlood (863255) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820279)

Exactly. It's all how you type. From my experience, if you don't type in shorthand, it's possible that you will start typing faster. I found it funny how I could type and send my message faster in correct English than someone who was typing in shorthand.

Re:To the Contrary! (1)

Tweekster (949766) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820445)

The thing I noticed about my typing is that in IM I am extrememly fast with relatively correct responses, however I hardly ever use any capitalization.

That is pretty much useless when it comes to IMs.

Re:To the Contrary! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820478)

A few things...first of all, it is not called the "English SAT," it is the verbal section of the SAT. Second, can you draw any true correlation between your high score and instant messaging? Or is it possible you have other factors influencing your score as well (lots of studying, reading many books, etc.). If you are going to post something that infers that all people who instant message alot will get high SAT verbal scores, please have something to back it up (other than pure speculation and poor reasoning), otherwise, leave that completely unsubstantiated possibility in your mind, and not in the publicly viewed spaces such as slashdot.

Re:To the Contrary! (1)

jcorno (889560) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820549)

I've used AIM and IRC excessively in the past few years, and it has led me to getting a nearly perfect score on my English SAT exams.


No, it hasn't. I'd be willing to bet you didn't learn a single word or skill from AIM that was applicable to the SAT. Most of the important vocabulary words are picked up in reading, not every day speech, and the reading comprehension skills for the SAT are drastically different from what you would use in conversation. You can't even say it didn't hurt, because you have nothing to compare it to.

Re:To the Contrary! (1)

shakezula (842399) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820607)

I agree, my usage of IRC and IM programs has assisted greatly with my keyboard skills. I've never taken a formal keyboarding class, yet through the use of chat on the Internet, I've developed nearly 50WPM typing ability.

Word Processor Autocorrect (5, Insightful)

Trashhalo (985371) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820193)

Is much worse for spelling than instant messaging ever was. If I spell a word wrong and it gets fixed then I never know I spelled it wrong. I doubt there are many people out there who think they are typing correcting when really they are using net speak.

Re:Word Processor Autocorrect (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820509)

It seems that grammar correct is pretty bad for you, too.

Re:Word Processor Autocorrect (2, Interesting)

CheshireCatCO (185193) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820600)

While I don't dispute your experience, I have to say that word processors (or IM clients) that flag suspect words has actually improved my spelling. I see the mispelled words so often that I start making a mental note of the ones I screw up the most, one at a time. I'm a lousy speller, but I actually find that that is helping.

Not done nuthin' 2 me. (1)

penguinstorm (575341) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820200)

It ain't done had no effect on me. I'm gonna IM 4ever.

Careful where you keep that chat history active though. Never know what your sysadmin finds interesting.

Hand Writing has suffered (2, Interesting)

neonprimetime (528653) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820210)

My mom always complained, and I've finally matured enough to see why. I used to have decent hand writing. But now that I've gone thru comps sci in college and site 8 hours a day at work on a pc, my hand writing sucks. I find myself printing always, no cursive. I find myself abbreviating and using those stupid instant messaging shorthand. It's terrible. The most annoying part is I can type 100+ wpm, and can't write anywhere near that, so I am thinking about the next sentence before I've even handwritten the first ... and thus a lot of times I loose my thoughts. Good news for me though is that I don't think the art of good hand-writing is coming back anytime soon, so I think I'll be ok.

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (2, Informative)

EvanED (569694) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820283)

a lot of times I loose my thoughts

Good thing you don't lose them before you have a chance to loose them.

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (4, Insightful)

guaigean (867316) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820345)

Cursive isn't really a necessity, just another preference of some people. The idea that cursive is more or less elegant is simply a passing fad. As for hand-writing versus typing, of course typing is much faster. It's sensible to do so, and is reasonable to type rather than write in many cases. The only reason people get in a tizzy over things like this is that they believe their language should be "pure". In reality, the only pure languages are dead languages. Any evolving language is subject to large tranformations, and just because the previous generation of linguists or literature majors doesn't agree with something doesn't mean it is wrong. After all, english is quite a different language today than it once was. Who's to say it will even be recognizable in years to come as such?

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820355)

the same has happened to me. though my handwriting was never good to begin with, it's gotten really bad of late. in fact, while i've never had a problem with dyslexia or anything like that in the past, i now find that i frequently write certain letters backwards and also write words out of order - that is, i'll begin writing the beginning of the word, leave a gap and write then end and then come back and try to squeeze the middle in. and the pencil or pen keeps flipping out of my hand. i was seriously beginning to think i had a brain tumor or something, but then it occured to me that, for nearly a decade, i've had little to no occasion to actually *write* something down. i do everything at the computer, now, and have lost the physical coordination required to write. sadly, i also suck at typing. sigh. it took me 20 minutes to peck this post out ...

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (1)

Ingolfke (515826) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820381)

Please post your private self indulgent thoughts on you personal blog and leave this forum for insults, FUD, and trolling. Thank you.

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820435)

I thought your personal blog was for providing others with links to pron?

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820432)

and thus a lot of times I loose my thoughts.

...

Might be you want to work on them there homonyms too, ya?

Re:Hand Writing has suffered (1)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820466)

No, your mom was wrong. Typing quickly is a more important skill for you to have than writing quickly. And if this ever changes, then you'll rapidly become better at writing quickly as you get more practice.

There's nothing intrinsically better about being able to write quickly compared with being able to type quickly. It's a type of old-fashioned snobbery.

100 wpm (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820494)

The most annoying part is I can type 100+ wpm, and can't write anywhere near that...

Who can!? You realize, I hope, that it takes years of experience with shorthand to get to writing that fast (though some savants have gotten up to 350 wpm).

Normal handwriting tops out at about 50 wpm for people good at it, according to what I've read.

Cursive is a dinousaur that deserves to die. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820563)

[nt]

Is grammar taught anymore... (-1, Flamebait)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820224)

Do public schools still teach grammar in the first place? I had to go to college to learn my three R's.

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (4, Informative)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820337)

Children don't have to formally learn grammar. A child learning a language natively will by definition speak with perfect grammar even without schooling, because in the science of linguistics rules of grammar are based on what is heard in the vernacular of the language in question, not what some pundit sets down by fiat.

If you're asking whether children are still taught prescriptivist rules, that's a whole 'nother matter.

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820463)

When I took my first English class at college, the instructor would ask me why I would a think a particular sentence grammar was correct. I told her it sounded correct. In the past, I had school teachers who threw a fit with that answer. But my college instructor taught me how to recognize what sounded correct to the corresponding rules of grammar.

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820428)

I had to go to college to learn my three R's.

The question is, why didn't you learn those at home before you entered grade school, as most in previous ages had?

I cannot remember a time at which I could not read. In fact, by the age of about 6 I could read the English vernacular of many centuries and many English subcultures, simply because, in my home. . .we read.

KFG

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820585)

The question is, why didn't you learn those at home before you entered grade school, as most in previous ages had?

Because the school system misdiagnosed my hearing problem as mental retardation and I had to be bussed to special schools to learn nothing. The school system gets three times as much money for a special ed student than a regular and they didn't want to reclassify me. Never mind that my reading skill level in the seventh grade was at college level since I was compulsive reader as young child. (Which is surprising since my parents never read at all.) I never went to high school and stayed home for four years as I taught myself as I read everything I could get my hands. The local adult high school program sent me off to the community college since it would take me five years to get my diploma. It took me only four years to get my associate degree in General Education. That was in 1994. I'm currently two classes away from getting an associate degree in computer programming. Go figure.

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (2, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820616)

. . .bussed to special schools to learn nothing.

Bingo! We have a winner.

KFG

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820473)

I had to go to college to learn my three R's.

You mean reading, writing, and arithmetic? I don't know about grammar, but it's apparent spelling is not taught anymore.

Re:Is grammar taught anymore... (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820614)

You mean reading, riting, and rithmetic? You're right... spelling isn't taught anymore. :P

Canadian teens? (5, Funny)

PoitNarf (160194) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820244)

Well now I know this is BS, because whenever I am speaking to a Canadian they mispell common words like color and flavor! For some reason they put a u in between the o and the r. It must be some new l33t speak or something...

Re:Canadian teens? (1)

weasello (881450) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820326)

As a Canadian, I'm more troubled by the Canadian Teens that spell Color and Flavor without the U. I blame AIM!

Re:Canadian teens? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820424)

How many Canadian teens actually use AIM anyways? MSN is all the rage here. Why? I really dont know, apparently their distaste for things American outweighs their distaste for featureless instant messaging from Microsoft. Come on, you can't even write a descriptive away message with MSN!

Typos. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820460)

You spelled colour and flavour wrong. And I have never seen any Canadians spell them colouur or flavouur, so I don't know what you are talking about with this extra u.

Re:Canadian teens? (0)

Creepy (93888) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820507)

No, that's just because you and practically every other American don't know English (British). Not that I'm any better.

http://www2.gsu.edu/~wwwesl/egw/jones/differences. htm [gsu.edu]

Oddly enough, even though Canadians use British English, most (that I know) use American object names - they'd say something like "I gave the pacifier to the kid in the stroller" rather than "I gave the dummy to the tot in the pram."

Maybe it's just me (5, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820259)

But my brain is 'asploding' from the posts so far in this thread with their 'lolz' and their 'plz' and their 'orly'. Get off my lawn, yada yada.

From a business perspective, I've seen college graduates emailing using the typical IM abbreviations -- but typically, when reminded that it's not appropriate, I'd say that the grammar of these new hires tends to be as good or better than some of what I see elsewhere. At least they've been communicating in a non-verbal format.

If anything, I find that those who have IM'd a lot tend to have an easier time of getting their message across clearly in emails -- maybe it's due to their understanding of the shortfalls of text communication.

M-m-m-max (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820267)

Back in the '80s, parents were worried that kids would try to copy Max Headroom's stuttering.

...WTF were they thinking? S-s-s-seriously! No-No-No one would ever t-t-t-talk like th-th-that.

(I need a Coca Cola! Haah!)

Punctuation and capitilization. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820272)

It's the lack of punctuation and capitilization that makes me cringe most of the time. Spelling rarely bothers me due to my own love of typoes.

I instant message and use IRC all the time. (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820274)

And obviously my grammar has suffered horribly. I doubt any of you can understand me right now, in fact.

Re:I instant message and use IRC all the time. (1)

z0I!) (914679) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820373)

what the hell are you trying to say? speak english!

Re:I instant message and use IRC all the time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820410)

My grammar has suffered horribly. I doubt any of you can understand me.

Parents need to get their children to read more (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820278)

I do not claim to be a fan of books (unless they are the O'rielly type) but I read my fair share of Hardy Boys and the likes in my younger youth. I can speak at abbreviated as msot on IM, but I dare say my grammar is in no danger. (my spelling still sucks however).

Re:Parents need to get their children to read more (1)

doti (966971) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820389)

I do not claim to be a fan of books (unless they are the O'rielly type)


O RLY?

western union telegrams (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820304)

i was going through old western union telegrams here at work from the 50's and 60's, and they're rife with shorthand, slang, and bad grammar.
Not much has changed in 50 years, regardless of the medium

Re:western union telegrams (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820399)

Tell me about it. All these motherfuckers complaining about other people using poor grammer on a website where "anyways" is a word.

Anyways, I gotta get back to work.

Not True (2, Funny)

mcguiver (898268) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820316)

What makes them think that chatting is going to cause the kids grammer to be worse? After looking at some of the papers coming in from kids I don't think that their grammer could get much worse no matter what they did. Of course, some of the teachers that I know spend so much time chatting too, they probably think that writing like that is normal.

Instant Messaging doesn't hurt grammar (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820317)

The article is correct in that instant messaging doesn't affect a person's grammar at all. That being said, what instant messaging and the internet in general do show is the extremely sad state of English grammar today. Before the internet and instant messaging people simply wouldn't write to each other as much or as publicly. Now that the lowest common denominator has access to the internet the problem is thrown into our faces. It's impossible to surf the net without witnessing an average of 5 apostrophe errors a minute. I honestly don't think that grammar has gotten worse, we just never noticed it before.

Speaking of grammar (1)

Spazmania (174582) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820321)

But instant messaging doesn't deserve its bad reputation as a spoiler of syntax, suggests a new study from the University of Toronto.

I vaguely remember my English teachers telling me not to start sentences with "but." I think that may also be a run-on sentence.

Re:Speaking of grammar (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820391)

English seems to have countless rules that don't have any justification apart from "This is the way it is because this is the way it has always been". Sentence can start with 'and' and 'but'. There is no reason not to split an infinitive. Sentences can end on a preposition. These should usually be avoided, it's true, but for reasons of good style, not because it's the law.

Re:Speaking of grammar (1)

dosius (230542) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820540)

Half those rules are unnatural to English and Germanic languages anyway, but are just people trying to apply Latin grammar rules to English.

-uso.

I'm reminded (3, Informative)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820333)

I'm reminded of this letter I saw in the NY Times in 1999 likening the coming of the internet to the downfall of the english language:


To the Editor:

A Feb. 20 Arts & Ideas pages article on the Internet's effect on language failed to bring the potential negative and positive consequences to their logical conclusion: the widespread acceptance of informal dialogue on the Internet is creating a generation of Americans fluent in unrefined, inexpressive and immature English.

Much as certain dialects of English have helped create subclasses of second-class citizens, frequent Internet users are becoming easier to pick out every day; they blurt out thoughts in staccato, almost barbarian fragments. Elegant grammar is beside the point; complete sentences are rare enough.

also in the news (2, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820334)

telegram abbrvs not responsible for poor victorian grammar STOP shorthand essential part of communication STOP language shaped by effeciency STOP.

Could it get worse if it's bad to begin with? (1)

demonic-halo (652519) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820344)

Could it get worse if it's bad to begin with?

Maybe bad grammer isn't a bad thing. The main point is everyone can understand you. What's a difference between "me and my friend" and "my friend and I" to someone who doesn't have a rule book in their head? Maybe it's evolution of language.. losing the unecessary fluff and I guess unecessary letter with it.

I tend to agree (1)

heldlikesound (132717) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820362)

I am a fairly capable writer, and when the need arises to express a point clearly and with some creative use of language, I usually am up for the task.

havin said that, when i m on im im concenred about getting the point across quickly and with the least amout of keyboard travel as possible, spellin and grammar take a backseat to speed and more importntaly flow of conversation....

Ok, back into "refined mode". I do find it interesting that I don't bother to correct spelling while conversing on IM, particularly words like "teh -> the", "fro -> for", and "who - > how". I suppose context fills in the gaps and helps the conversation flow along.

Re:I tend to agree (1)

weasello (881450) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820438)

IM and IRC is more about participating in a conversation, stutters, mumbles, slips of the tongue and all the other things that go along with it (with real lifedigital parallels). Plus, those that can't type as fast as they can talk may miss a key moment in conversation while they type out a thesis rebuttal, at which point conversation has likely moved on.

When writing thoughts that are to last for the ages (written pages, letters, some would argue Blogs), there is no need for a hurried response nor the hilarity or calamity of typos and mispellings (which make IRC and comment-posting just that much more interesting), and thusly are usually better prepared.

IMHO of course.

Re:I tend to agree (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820589)

And it took me a few seconds of thinking to decode that you meant "Having said that, when I am on IM I'm concerned about...". That certainly doesn't do anything but impede the flow of "conversation", rather than expedite it. Just use a full word. It doesn't take that long to type.

Decline of Language (2, Insightful)

weasello (881450) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820382)

Of course, studies also show that 150 years ago English was a whole lot better spoken and written than it is today - you know, top hats and tea time and Ma'ams and Sirs all 'round. Hell, barkeeps in the Wild West talk more eloquently than I do (and I think that's the first time the word 'eloquently' has passed through my head in years). This is obviously due to instant messaging and IRC. If I lived in the US I'd be filing a lawsuit against... whoever maintains this series of tubes.

I somehow doubt it... (1)

martinultima (832468) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820384)

Maybe I'm totally wrong here, but half the people at my school use IM-speak even in class assignments (as in minimum-6-page-paper-plus-bibliography type assignments)... and I somehow doubt that stuff like Wal-Mart's latest back-to-school "Foreign Language" ad thing – the one showing various cell phones, pagers, etc. with horrible IM-speak – is really helping much. Although maybe it's just me?

Fun with Punctuation (4, Funny)

Aabra (775518) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820408)

Blatently ripped from Eats, Shoots & Leaves :) Dear Jack, I want a man who knows what love is all about. You are generous, kind, thoughtful. People who are not like you admit to being useless and inferior. You have ruined me for other men. I yearn for you. I have no feelings whatsoever when we're apart. I can be forever happy - will you let me be yours? Jill Dear Jack, I want a man who knows what love is. All about you are generous, kind, thoughtful people, who are not like you. Admit to being useless and inferior. You have ruined me. For other men I yearn! For you I have no feelings whatsoever. When we're apart I can be forever happy. Will you let me be? Yours, Jill

Telegraph didn't hurt anybody's grammar (4, Insightful)

Retired Replicant (668463) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820413)

People used to write telegrams in short, incomplete sentences in order to save money on the transmission by reducing the length of the message, and as far as I know it didn't hurt anybody's grammar.

Re:Telegraph didn't hurt anybody's grammar (3, Insightful)

evanbd (210358) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820532)

To be fair, there's a difference in quantity that could reasonably be expected to be relevant...

Also, most kids these days spend a fair bit of time on IM / SMS / etc, whereas kids almost never sent telegraphs. It is plausible that using bad grammar and syntax would hurt more when you're young and still learning.

I don't think telegraphs are a particularly relevant comparison.

Re:Telegraph didn't hurt anybody's grammar (3, Funny)

null_session (137073) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820555)

Good point (stop)

Not correct to assume message content affected by path (stop)

Silly people (stop)

oh, let us pray! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820422)

Our Father, who 0wnz heaven, j00 r0ck!
May all 0ur base someday be belong to you!
May j00 0wn earth just like j00 0wn heaven.
Give us this day our warez, mp3z, and pr0n through a phat pipe.
And cut us some slack when we act like n00b lamerz, just as we teach n00bz when they act lame on us.
Please don't give us root access on some poor d00d'z box when we're too pissed off to think about what's right and wrong, and if you could keep the fbi off our backs, we'd appreciate it.
For j00 0wn r00t on all our b0x3s 4ever and ever, 4m3n.

I agree.... (5, Funny)

MattS423 (987689) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820496)

I've been AIMing for years, and I can write a coherent sentance. In fact, with the latest speech-to-text programs, I don't even have to use AIM shorthand...i can just speak and dear aunt, let's set so double the killer delete select all.

Re:I agree.... (1)

z0I!) (914679) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820557)

I've been AIMing for years, and I can write a coherent sentance
Hi,

No entry found for sentance.

Did you mean sentence?

That's not the problem (1)

c (8461) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820517)

I don't particularly care what or how people talk to each other when IM'ing. The problem is that when they try to use the same constructs and shorthands in a different context (e-mail, say), they come across like half-wits.

If studies also indicate they are perfectly capable of using decent english (or whatever) but just choose not...

c.

Kids These Days (2, Insightful)

8ball629 (963244) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820533)

And what were they considering to do about it? Ban IMing in Canada?

What are kids going to do to increase their grammar if they can't IM their friends? Sure some will write stories, journals and poetry but that isn't going to be a majority of kids. If they aren't practicing language in one way or another than their language skills will be far worse than "tainted IM language."

This is just another case of "oh no, the internet is evil" just like rock and roll was evil in the '50s O_o (what would that be without IMing? two "O's" and an underscore?). Netspeak is almost like learning a second language, a lot easier to learn but it's more dynamic and creative than any other language that I know of and that could be because I only know a few spoken languages ;).

I think it helps (2, Insightful)

edmicman (830206) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820543)

Actually, I think using chat rooms when I was younger and ultimately IM-ing has made me a much better typist. It improved my skills so that I am able to type quickly and accurately. Poor grammar and writing skills exist whether you are using pen, pencils, paper, or computers. It is a sign of not caring, not of the medium. You can write shorthand, scribble on a scrap piece of paper, etc. just as easy as you can type gibberish.

tHE PRoBLEM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15820556)

the problem
with IM
is it makes me speak
in short choppy sentences

not me! (1)

blindd0t (855876) | more than 7 years ago | (#15820582)

I use AIM all teh time and I nvr make ne misteaks. I catch everyting and keep myself from mispelling when I talk about software enchantments and righting custom functinos with my fiends and co-workers. ;-)
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