Online Lingua Franca?
You're probably wondering what online lingua franca is and you're probably wondering why I'm referring to it. Well, online lingua franca is English adapted for the spitfire conversational style of Internet instant messaging. This spitfire style is taking over the academic world.
In Jennifer Lee's article, "I Think, Therefore IM," she interviewed Jesse Shedidlower, the North American editor of the Oxford English Dictionary, who explained that "there is no official English language. Language is spread not because not anyone dictates any one thing to happen. The decisions are made by the language and the people who use the language.'' The teenage society today has pushed the boundaries of spoken language, introducing words that adults find hard to adapt to. I find it bewildering that this sort of text language is being implemented into actual school work. It is with the help of the new emerging technology that gives rise to the tweens' new social lingo
For many teachers and professors, they believe the real issue is carelessness as explained in the article, "IM Shortcuts Popping Up in the Real World". As I wrote in my blog about how the informal style of electronic messages are showing up in school work, I explained that I personally have never used emoticons, text shortcuts or omitted
proper grammar and punctuation in my schoolwork, but outside of essays
and other schoolwork, I find myself using this new form of
Within that blog, I received a comment from MS arguing "that as an English teacher, all that I have to say is that these IM's and
text messages are destroying the English language faster than anything
else... This abomination of our language is not cute, hip or expressive; it is dangerous." that sparked an idea in my Professor's, Dr. Jerz, mind to elaborate more about this topic on his own blog. Dr. Jerz clarified that he knows "many student
writers who can text with winged thumbs, and also turn out well-written
research papers on literary theory."
He has yet meet a student who can't expand this online lingua franca into complete sentence. "For every accidental "ur" (a popular IM abbreviation for "your"), I see at least as many examples of "per say" (a mondegreen for "per se") and "should of" (a similar mishearing of "should have"), and all manner of similar mistakes ("That story was bias" for "That story was biased") that have nothing to do with text messaging, and a lot to do with the fact that tweens and teens live in a largely oral culture,"Jerz said.
A senior classmate, Andrew Lonigro, explained in his blog that in his experience and his understanding of the evolution and history of language, generation by generation there are changes that take place. Andrew used the example that "when looking at the transition from Old English to Middle English to Early Modern English and so on, there are constantly new rules and new jargin that change and evolve the language."This phenomenon that is taking place with new online language is a result of the search for the quickest and most convenient way to communicate to others. The English language is changing once again in correspondence with society's changes, especially with technology.
In Tamar Lewin's "Informal Style of Electronic Messages is Showing Up in Schoolwork, Study Finds," she finds that "as e-mail messages, text messages and social network postings become nearly ubiquitous in the lives of teenagers, the informality of electronic communications is seeping into their schoolwork." Nearly 300 students that were surveyed said their e-communication style sometimes bled into school assignments.
Karissa Kilgore and Jay Pugh, SHU graduates, did a presentation in my Literary Criticism class two years ago where they argued that IM chat and text messaging wasa new form of writing and language. Karissa wrote on her blog, "With its pervasiveness, IM language is becoming a genre all its own. It has conventions like any other, and develops as the technology does. Although many find IM language to be a lack of form, the reality of the language is that the lack of 'form' creates the newer version of form."
I couldn't agree with her more. Any type of writing is real writing even if it is improper. They are still expressing their views, ideas and thoughts just with using shortcuts and other forms of the new English language to express it in a quicker manner. They just need to learn how to revise the shortcuts before handing in an academic paper.