If you could take a stroll down a busy street at any given time, it is not difficult to come across someone who is head-down and absorbed into their phone while fixated in tapping away to an unseen person. Chances are, they are likely to be on Facebook or Twitter or even involved in chatting with other people on SMS or WhatsApp. It has become a fact that we all have to embrace that social media and these texting services are now the focal point of the writing that is done in this time and age on a daily basis.
In most people’s eyes, there is an element of looking at this current writing trends as some type of malignant ailment that seeks to erode the current generation’s writing quality everywhere. This can be easily evidenced by the tremendous decline in the spelling standards, poor punctuation, and grammar which extends to the utmost fundamental principles of writing such as incorporation of full stops and commas.
All these are some of the valid complaints, and you find these problems cutting into the business world where emojis and emoticons are being slipped into important business emails. These are some of the effects that excessive use of social media is having on writing on young people. This article seeks to expound further on some of the main ways that social media is affecting young people’s writing.
Their Grammar Is Being Eaten Up By Abbreviations and New Words Only Applicable In
There are a number of social media sites that are popular among young people such as Twitter that normally have character limits to their users. While this is meant to force them to forge a way of condensing their thoughts together, it has had some deteriorating effects on their grammar.
This is solely owed to the fact that for them to communicate effectively, they are required to indulge in an excessive usage of textspeak. This entails the use of an entirely new set of abbreviations and words that have the same meaning as their original English counterparts but have totally different spellings and pronunciations. A good example of this is an abbreviation such as "LOL" (which is used to mean laughing out loud). It has even evolved from original application to being used in messages to add a light-hearted mood or tone, almost like a punctuation mark.
The above is not harmful at all when it comes to applications on social media platforms, but the problems ensue when young people forget to revert back to the correct grammar in formal writing. Most of them have been accustomed to communicating effectively in this new abbreviations and shorthand texts that they cannot differentiate between the settings that allow for their incorporation and those that don’t.
Use of Social Media Makes Them to Write As They Speak
When writing on various social media platforms, the general trend of things is bent towards writing in a manner that can reflect your speech. You will find numerous words that have been abbreviated and contracted in order for them to resemble their contracted form that is present during speaking.
A good example is the dropping of "t" in the word "left" so that it might come off as the actual spoken word in some dialects. An application of the above can be seen in the following sentence. “I lef(t) school early today". This same form of contraction is seen to be brought into young people`s official writing forums such as writing history essay topics which is an entirely unsuitable application of the writing habits acquired from the use of social media.
Use of Social Media Numbs Them on the Importance of Proofreading
When people log into their various social media accounts, there is an evident trend of the organization of ideas in a manner that suggests that they are straight from the subconscious and do not require the scrutiny of our consciousness to correct and modify the written content. This is evidenced by the rate at which most young people send messages with almost 50 messages being sent from a single WhatsApp user on a daily basis.
This can be without doubt interpreted as the messages in question being hardly proofread or edited by the people sending them. Most of them will just hit the send button as soon as the content they have written has tumbled out of their minds. If this is not enough, you just need to take a short trip into a social media site such as Facebook and take a look at the comments left on various pages and take a rough scrutiny of the content within them. It will not take you long to come to the conclusion that these comments are released into the social media world without any revision or editing at all!
All this messaging over social media platforms at rapid-fire rates is surely leading to deterioration of the writing skills and techniques that are so-needed in the formal sector. The custom of posting content in social media without giving it a second thought or even proofreading it is taking a toll on the young people’s mindset of how a formal writing setup should be. More often than not, they reciprocate such practices in areas such as essay writing, job applications, and even examinations.
The world of social media is one that has taken the young generation by storm. It has numerous advantages that can be strung along to it, but it is important to note that it is not immune from having its downsides. One of the most conspicuous hazards of social media is the effect that it can have to young people’s writing skills.
Being more of an informal setting, social media has had some dire consequences for the majority of the young people and the manner in which it causes this has been shared in this article.
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