Monday, April 19, 2021

Social Networks ÔÇô the place where English goes to die

If you have been on Twitter lately, you might have seen the word ‘engrish’ or the phrase ‘mind my engrish’ a few times.

If you are a blogger and you are a user, then you might have seen a lot of posts with an angry man and text with obvious grammatical errors and I know for sure that if you are a Facebooker, you know what im talking about because Facebook is the worst of them all. Social networks have become the graveyard for the English language.

I blame it on technology advancement. If it hadn’t changed so much and evolved this much, we would still be reading books and learning not only how to pronounce new words but also how to write them. If you were to ask me when it started, I would say it started with the introduction of cell phones and their short message service, or sms, as we call them. That is when every single word started being cut; I am not talking about abbreviations here; I am talking about a simple word losing some of its characters to make typing faster.

That is the age when the word cannot turned to ‘cnt’, when became ‘wen’ and spacing became ‘spcn’. But the ones I found interesting were the ones that ended up with numbers in them to replace letters.
Words like hate became ‘h8′, night=9t, forever= 4eva and mate= m8. I remember I used to get into trouble at school every time because I was so used to texting that I would use the same language on my essays and they wouldn’t make any sense to my teachers and that is when I decided no more shortcuts when writing anything.

As bad as it was then, it has gotten worse with the introduction of social networks. I guess the shortcuts could be excused, as every person who used them knew that they were writing so to make typing easy but now we have people butchering words and not even knowing that they are doing so. It is not the spelling that I am concerned about because thankfully computers have spell check so that is not much of a problem.

It is the usage of wrong words shamelessly that makes you wonder if all these people slept through all their English classes and never learnt anything about homophones and have not the faintest clue that just because words sound the same does not mean they are spelt the same or even have the same definition. The most popular being ‘your’ that is used in place of you’re and ‘where’ is used in the place of ‘were’.

Maybe my gun is pointed at the wrong target; maybe I should blame hip-hop for the decaying English language among our youth, with all the slang words that replaced proper words for a long time.

The bottom line is that I am worried, especially for the future generation if they are going to be raised by the social network generation.

It means they will never understand when they are reading any of their school books because social networks have buried their parents’ English.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper