Teenagers shun text speak for new words and emojis

By John Glenday | Reporter

May 1, 2015 | 2 min read

Teenagers are retreating further from the English language to bamboozle parents according to language experts who have noticed a trend away from traditional ‘text speak’ toward obscure codes.

Since the dawn of text messaging words have been shortened, punctuation jettisoned and numeric characters introduced in an effort to speed up the process of communication and lower costs to create familiar abbreviations such as LOL (laugh out loud) L8RZ (see you later).

Whilst these are relatively simple to work out for the uninitiated they are also dropping in popularity as they become more mainstream, prompting teenagers seek to differentiate themselves further with a new breed of exclusionary terms obeying no rules of logic of phonetics.

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New words include ‘Bae’, a term of endearment and FOMO ‘Fear of missing you’, with adherents also cominf to increasingly rely on emoji’s to communicate via pictograms.

Commenting on the messaging revolution John Sutherland, professor emeritus of modern English literature at University College London, told The Times: “Technological evolution has meant that these words are now effectively extinct from the text speak language.

“The use of audio and visual messaging has become more commonplace with the soaring popularity of social media and instant messaging apps such as Instagram, Vine and Snapchat.

“This harks back to a caveman-form of communication where a single picture can convey a full range of messages and emotions,” he said. “In the future, fewer words and letters will be used in messaging as pictures and icons take over.”


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