Do u use text slang?

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I was old enough, or curmudgeonly enough, when texting became popular that I refused to use slang and abbreviations like u and and 4 and ttyl, even as I scoffed at fusty journalists who were diligently explaining the new lingo to my parents’ generation. As a writer, I try to be fastidious about my use of language regardless of the platform, and I don’t see any reason I shouldn’t condense my thoughts if they won’t fit the constraints of the genre. Typos? I hate to receive them, so I try my best not to give them.

However, I now have a touch-screen phone, and my resolve is softening. Not on the text slang front; I’d feel much too ridiculous (though for a time I used “yr” since I’d read it in some of Ezra Pound’s letters and figured it had provenance).

But oh, my clumsy fingers! The letters slip between them and are lost, and I am growing tired of trying to reposition my cursor to correct them. Which means… I guess I understand why text slang was invented.

Do you use it?

4 thoughts on “Do u use text slang?

  1. NO! I would make a lousy text sender. I don’t text. I don’t like the way our language is being. It doesn’t set well with me when I see the abbreviations used in texting and, increasingly, in e-mail. It won’t be long and we won’t have anyone able to spell correctly, speak correctly, nor think correctly. Alas, I am a dinosaur.

  2. Absolutely not. I am, like you, fairly fastidious about my language. Some might call it pedantry. I have autocomplete on my iPhone and this saves some time, some of the time. The downside to that is when the phone thinks it knows better and substitutes the incorrect word; I have to go back and type the correct word in. There’s also the times that I type the word and briefly see the autocomplete before I hit the space bar. That creates the doubt in my mind that I have spelled the word incorrectly. Very frustrating, although I keep the autocomplete turned on as I have chubby fingers that are too large for the iPhone keyboard.

    So, no abbreviations: I’m too much of a pedant.

  3. I used regular abbreviations rather than text-speak until someone was kind enough — a good few years ago now — to put autocompletion into SMS editors. Since then I’ve rarely felt the need to use anything but regular English as I don’t know what to do with the half-a-second the short forms will save me. There’s still less need when a phone has a qwerty keyboard. Text-speak is fine in its place but it’s alarming to see it in other contexts — even in some exam papers and CVs now, apparently. I’m not going to preach but if U do that, gd luck 2U!

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