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The following are several views regarding this question:

  • Written language is a form of expressing oneself in a given language. In other words, it is supposed to express the idea of the communicator only in the form that the language admits and allows. This is so there can be some touch of universality to the idea expressed. English language, for instance, is a universal language; therefore it has and should have a universal appeal in its writing. That the popular and universally-accepted mode of writing changes because of new technologies only belies the importance of these technologies in improving our writing skills. Writing and literary forms, which have been with us for so long, and have shaped our communication intellectually, should not have to vary whenever e-mailing or texting messages. Normal abbreviations should be used when necessary. Writing is still an invaluable instrument of literary creativity.
  • It is helping people to write because it's so simple and sometimes it is a lot of work to synthesize words and numbers and that produces thought and creativity which produces more writing.
  • If texting and email culture is an offshoot to the cultural logic of late capitalism, or globalization which signifies the commodification of everything, then texting and email is developing a new breed of people who prey on convenience. The effort required for writing is forsaken. Also, there was a study conducted at Cambridge that texting interferes with students' ability to spell correctly, and to formulate grammatically correct sentences.
  • Texting and email ARE written language, although they may be very far from literature! It was long predicted that radio and TV would cause the permanent demise of literature. This hasn't been true. Although visual media are popular, more books are being published and purchased than at any time in history.
  • I think texting is hurting social behavior more than it is the English language. Many of the abbreviations in texting started with instant messaging. If used correctly, texting is a great tool that can be used to speed up communication. For instance, I can send a quick message to my wife ... coming home. Or can ask a question of someone through a text who is usually difficult to get a hold of. Since people carry their phones with them almost everywhere they go, this creates a nice convenience. Finally, pay as you go texting plans are not destroying writing skills. I believe it is more our education system along with parents who are failing our kids when it comes to writing skills. We should do better with or without texting.
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2011-09-21 05:48:26
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Q: Will email and texting together destroy the power of written language and literature?
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