30 Minus 2 Days of Writing: Texting (7/28)
I’ll admit, I’m a texter.
In this day and age, it’s hard not to be. But I’m not afraid of a phone call or anything like that. And I’ve actually witnessed people texting each other, when they could have walked 250 feet just to talk.
As technology continues to grow, texting and other forms of communications will obviously increase. This makes it harder for the face-to-face meetings to still happen.
I’m not as worried about the texting as I am about how it’s making our nation (and the world, for that matter) dumber.
Yes, I said it.
How do I mean this? Allow me to make it a bit easier for you to understand, if you’re a texter.
Texter 1: ?4U
Texter 2: sup
Texter 1: R u readin this blog?
Texter 2: yeh. dood is cr8Z
Texter 1: its stoopid
Texter 2: YOLO
Honestly, that probably doesn’t make a lot of sense. I say that because I don’t know all the texting lingo of today’s generation. There are too many abbreviated words and phrases. I’ve had to ask people what the hell they were talking about during some exchanges.
I’m old school, I guess.
When I text, I type out full words. The only time I don’t is if my iPhone has decided it knows a better word than I am typing. At that point, auto correct will do something stupid. Then I have to type it all over to make it right.
I never use the normal “shortcuts,” such as “2, U, R, 4” etc. It’s lazy.
And, it becomes the norm for the younger generation. When they do all that “tap, tap, tap” conversations, it becomes part of their vocabulary. Though I use the term in online discussions, how many times have you heard somebody say “LOL” out loud? Seriously? Or “OMG.”
Come on, people.
But this gets worse. I swear.
I’ve taught at the college level before. I was an adjunct instructor, doing several freshman composition classes. This is something I hope to do again sometime as it’s a really refreshing job. I truly loved it. But it was also maddening at times.
I actually had to put something in the syllabus about using texting lingo. In fact, I noted that if I saw any of this in a paper, it would immediately get an F. I would stop reading at that point and fail the paper.
It happened several times, too. Some people had it happen to them more than once.
When typing a paper, I can kind of understand the mistake one time. And, usually, it didn’t hurt them that bad because I would often drop a person’s lowest grade. So, in the end, it was my hope they learned from that mistake.
But, I actually had more than one person turn in an in-class assignment — so handwritten — with text lingo.
Should I use it? Yes… yes I should. OMG!! Like guys, 4 real?
The best was when they would get the paper back and see that giant F. The looks on their face when they skimmed and saw why they got that grade. One paper I was grading was excellent. And it was well on its way to being a really good grade. Then it slipped in. A giant “U.”
I shook my head.
I have no issues with people texting and having fun with it for communication. Heck, even the shortcuts I can live with (though it still bothers me) when I receive a text.
But in the real world? Nah.
When questioned about my policy by several students, I defended it easily enough. I told them in this situation, you just get an F. And, if you only do it once (several of them needed two or three Fs to realize I wasn’t kidding), it doesn’t hurt you that bad. However, do it in the real world and see what happens.
Imagine putting something like this in a cover letter?
“I would luv 2 work 4 ure company cause i think i can do what u need done.”
I’m pretty sure I know where that cover letter and resume would (hopefully) end up. Who knows though? In this day and age, you never can tell. People’s eyes go glossing over things and maybe something would be missed.
I’ll keep fighting the good fight. Alas, in the end, it may be a losing battle. Only time will tell.
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