Over on WEbook.com, there is a project called Daily WTF?, an interactive blogging site where writers from all walks of life and from all four corners of the world let loose their rants, raves, quiet moments and tortures upon the reader.
No one writer expresses herself with more vehemence than Andalib. And it is with her permission that I republish her most recent blog on text-speak and the lack of imaginative use in the English language. Here is her rant in full. Be warned, though: as is befitting Andy’s style, this piece is not for the faint-hearted.
Rant: Hw d u spel ths wurd
Yes, my dear friends, I know that the title of this particular post is – agonizing to look at but, I had to do it!
I simply had to show you what depths we have sunk to.
Facebook, IM, Twitter, MySpace and whatever else is out there is truly, truly, TRULY a pain in the ass! Yes, they are ‘good’ communication tools; yes, they allow us to speak to others half way around the world; yes, it gives us an inside look into the lives of celebrities and we are privy to some amazing info first hand (I just ate an apple and it was so good!) – um, OK, so maybe not the last one but you get the general idea, right?
Having stated all of that, it irks me considerably when I see that shitty IM lingo appear everywhere. Punctuation, grammar, spelling, pronunciation, synonyms and antonyms are all lost when IM is used.
‘I bought nice shoes, a nice dress, a nice handbag and the price was nice too.’
‘i luv dis gurl lyk so much i dnt no if id liv if she left me’
The English language is SO beautiful.
It’s eloquent, graceful, classy.
Don’t get me wrong, ‘fuck, shit, c*ck, tits, c*nt’ (parental guidance is due here) and other filthy, vulgar words exist (and are occasionally used by yours truly) but I mean, REALLY!!
Nice, nice, nice??!! There are NO words other than NICE??!!
NONE? In the entire fucking DICTIONARY??!!
Come on, man. SERIOUSLY!!
luv, i , gurl??!!
Wht da fuk mn
wht da fuk
Then the students get a low mark for an assignment, test, exam, whatever for writing shit like that and it’s THE TEACHER’S FAULT??!!
How the FUCK do you explain that one?
‘Your son can’t spell worth shit, Mr. & Mrs. Jones.’
‘Excuse me? What did you say?! Our son is forever writing on the Internet! He text messages all his friends and you’re telling us he CAN’T spell?! This is a vendetta! This is a conspiracy against our Timmy! You must be one of those sick teachers who tried to get sexual with our son but he turned you down so now you’re failing him. We’ll go to the school board with this! You’ll see! We have friends in high places who will send your sorry, manipulative, sex addicted ass bouncing!’
Oh! Then you get the little bastards who go homicidal, suicidal, fucking completely NUTS when that happens and end up shooting the whole fucking school to bits!
We (and here I mean Facebook, IM, Twitter, MySpace etc, etc, etc) are causing children (and some adults) to LOSE THE ABILITY TO SPELL!!!
It’s a fucking Greek tragedy. I shit you not.
There was a survey held recently by a bunch of people who went around asking American teenagers if they could name the first five presidents of the USA. They went to public schools, private schools, slums, upper class neighborhoods – every where and you know what they discovered?
97% of them did not know the answer!
They then held the exact same survey in China. They asked the same question, the same neighborhood situations, the same schools – everything and you know what they discovered?
100% of them knew the answer!
It breaks my heart to know that these little fuckers who write ‘Hw d u spel ths wurd’ and ‘nice, nice, nice’ will one day be our country’s leaders.
Oh the shame.