Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Txting: The Gr8 Db8

Oh hai. In teh beginnin Ceiling Cat maded teh skiez An da Urfs, but he did not eated dem. Da Urfs no had shapez An haded dark face, An Ceiling Cat rode invisible bike over teh waterz.
Genesis 1 in lolcat
On July 5th, the new book txting: the gr8 db8 was released by Oxford University Press.

The OUP blog discusses how difficult it will be to dispel the urban myths surrounding the effects of txting on literacy.

David Crystal, a language expert, in a post appearing on his blog, continues the arguments made in his book.
What people fail to appreciate is that, to be a good texter, you actually have to be a good speller. You have to know how words are spelled before you can appreciate the effect of leaving letters out.
Also, remember one of the big discoveries reported in my Txtng book - that less than 10 per cent of the words used in text messages are actually abbreviated. So most of text messaging is standard anyway. The new creative possibilities offered by texting are also fully illustrated in the new book.
He goes on to say:
It's too easy for people to blame texting for every ill. That's the lazy way out. Teachers in particular should avoid taking it. If kids are having problems with spelling, the reasons lie elsewhere. Texting is part of the solution, not the problem. The first research results are absolutely clear: the more you text, the better your literacy scores.
And just in case you become obsessed with the possibilities:
But probably the most remarkable phenomenon, from a linguistic point of view, is LOLcats, LOLdogs, and related sites. This started by showing cute pictures of the animals and captioning them in nonstandard English. It goes well beyond the limited conventions of text-messaging, and is now developing into a genre of its own. Most of the Old Testament seems to have been translated into it, it seems, as this LOLcat Bible site shows.

They're even trying to standardize it - see How to speak lolcat.
And what I thought was his most profound statement:
It's amazing what's out there, when you go looking!

Let me link you to your closest independent bookstore! Just enter your ZIP code below before pressing the button. If you do not enter your ZIP, an indie bookstore will be chosen for you at random, and any of these stores can mail this title to you.

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