My Two Left Thumbs

While texting was technically invented in the early nineties, it only started to gain widespread popularity in the last six years (or so).  For five out of those six years, I was perched high atop my soapbox, proclaiming that texting would be the death of all meaningful human interaction.  If someone had handed me a megaphone, I would have shouted, “Why don’t you people ever talk to each other anymore?!”

As a writer, I also saw texting as a personal affront to the written word.  Grammar, spelling, punctuation, and sentence structure were all scrapped in favor of the English language’s newborn bastardized son – the short message service (SMS), also called text speak; a language full of acronyms, abbreviations, and numerical inserts.  So, it seemed texting was not only replacing our meaningful face-to-face interactions and phone calls, it was also responsible for creating an entire generation of crappy writers.

When my thirteen-year old daughter wrote “u” instead of “you” in a rough draft essay for her English class I nearly had a brain aneurism.  I knew she was only using the shortened version of the word because it was a rough draft her teacher would never see, but I still lectured her (ad nauseam) about the importance of spelling and grammar, and about how crucial it was for her to differentiate between her schoolwork and the texts she sends her friends.

Don’t roll your eyes at me.  I stop being a self-righteous asshole in just a sec….

On the rare occasion I texted someone, I stubbornly dug my heels in and refused to use text speak, despite the fact that it took me ten times longer to text someone using proper English on my dinosaur of a flip-phone (sans keyboard).  Probably would have been quicker to communicate via homing pigeon. But I had my principles, no matter how asinine or antiquated.

I was teased by friends and family about my novel-length texts (complete with proper capitalization and punctuation), and frequently asked, “What are you writing, a book?”  Sadly, no.  It seems I’m as easily distracted writing a real book as you seem to be reading my text-books (text-books…. get it?  Hahaha).

*Side note:  if you happen to be a book agent, believe me when I say that I will buy out my pharmacy’s entire supply of Ritalin and start popping them like tic-tacs if it means landing a book deal.  Okay, moving on….

But then about a year ago my husband and I decided to get our (then) twelve-year old daughter, Meghan, her first cell phone.  And at the same time, I decided it was time for me to upgrade my cellasaurus.  I knew I wanted a touch screen and keyboard, but I wasn’t anywhere near ready to take on the iPhone.  The salesman took one look at the flip-phone in my hand and suggested I buy the “Pantech Ease” – a phone clearly designed for the technologically challenged.  I didn’t know whether to be insulted or relieved.

Before taking two steps outside of the Verizon store, my daughter had already sent me several text messages.  As we walked through the mall, I tried not to run into a wall or another shopper while my clumsy thumbs attempted to keep pace with her rapid-fire text messages.  She only had the phone for five minutes and she was already fluent in text-speak, and could move her thumbs across that tiny keyboard with unnatural speed and agility.

During the course of the next week, Meghan sent me hundreds of text messages – most of them while we were within speaking distance (curse you, unlimited text plan!)  I was reluctantly transformed from a mom who sent less than ten texts during the course of a week, into a piss poor imitation of a teenage textaholic.

As the month wore on, I could feel my resolve starting to weaken; slowly acronyms and numerical inserts began to rear their ugly heads.  Meghan forced me to end my war on text speak, and brought me over to the dark side – the land where spelling and grammar go to die.  I rationalized that it was better to raise the white flag and surrender, than to have both my thumbs fall off.

Meghan schooled me in acronyms, and let out an exasperated sigh whenever I didn’t know what one meant.  She once sent me a text that read, “DTB.  TTYL.”  Umm…. what?  I stared at the screen totally dumbfounded.  Without my acronym decoder ring, I had no idea what it meant, so I used the next best thing – Google.  Google told me that she was trying to say, “Don’t text back.  Talk to you later.”  It was my turn to let out an exasperated sigh, and wonder why the hell two English-speaking people needed a translator.

Just so you don’t run into the same problem, I’m posting this link.  If you have a teenager, I suggest you bookmark it….

Acronym Dictionary

I still hated all the short-cuts, but at least I understood the necessity for them.  What I couldn’t understand was why teenagers made shorter words longer or misspelled them for no reason.  Words like “hey” became “heyyyyyy”, and “ok” became “kk”.  It was obviously no longer a time saver, so what was the reason?

Meghan gave me a blank stare when I asked her, so I once again turned to Google for the answers.  After checking out various websites on texting, it seemed the added letters or purposeful misspelling indicated emphasis, coolness, and/or drunkenness. So my daughter was either trying to make a point, fit in with her peers, or she was ready for the Betty Ford clinic. Awesome.

Thankfully, since last year Meghan has filled up her cell phone address book with numerous friends and family members, and no longer relies on me as her primary texting buddy.  My thumbs are eternally grateful.

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424 thoughts on “My Two Left Thumbs

  1. AWESOME post! I’m a writer by profession too, and I think I may have seen you once or twice on our adjoining soapboxes…

    And btw (text reference intentional, btw…), I also used to teach college writing classes. COLLEGE writing. And I did have students use text language in papers.

    Did I mention: These were COLLEGE writing classes.

    That’s why I USED to teach college writing classes…

    😉

    • I can relate to you. This year I bought an iphone. I am embarassed to say that my smart phone is smarter than my brain. The secret language of text eludes me, and I do find myself googling the acronyms (which of course takes me ten times as long as just typing things the correct way). And no matter how hard I try to use just two fingers or my thumbs to text, it is impossible; word correct can only do so much. How do they do that? (And by they, I mean anyone who can use only two digits to send texts.)

      I am an ENGLISH teacher and I find the students are well-schooled in texting language, but can’t write a sentence that is grammatically correct. (And no, the word “cuz” shouldn’t find its way into a cause/effect relationship!

      • momsgotproblems – First off, love your handle (user name, tag… whatever you call it). Like you, I never feel dumber than when I have an iPhone in my hands. My husband got one and he keeps telling me how wonderful it is. Perhaps if someone sets fire to my computer, I’ll cave in and get one myself 🙂

        As for you dealing with your students (I’ve gotten several teachers responding to this post), I don’t envy the task of trying to force them to speak English – I think my brain would explode. I give you major, MAJOR kudos for dealing with that on a daily basis!

    • I am so glad I came across your post. Not a writer by profession but I love writing poetry and short stories and journaling… then came this stupid thing called texting. My cell phone is basic… used just to make phone calls… that’s it. Family and friends have tried to get me into text, but I absolutely refuse to text for the various reasons you stated. 😀 It would be nice if more people understood the joy of written communication rather than the silly text messages which seem to have caused more harm than good.

      • Linda (nice name!) – You use your phone to make PHONE CALLS?? Wow…. I feel like I just stumbled on a rare archeological find 🙂

        I agree that most people don’t experience any joy when they write – they see it as a chore; which (I guess) is why they take the short cuts. I get excited over a well-crafted sentence/story/status update/blog post/etc., and can’t wait to see how my writing will effect people. There is seriously no greater high for me than hearing that I made someone laugh/cry because of something I wrote.

    • Thanks so much for posting, Mikalee! I had no idea I had so much company on that soapbox of mine 🙂

      Scary that kids in college can’t shelve the text-speak long enough to write a decent paper… and for a WRITING class no less!! I don’t blame you for quitting. Had I been in your situation, I wouldn’t have been standing on my soapbox, I would have been beating my students over the head with it.

    • I’m a composition instructor, and this is definitely an issue. I like the way that you followed the slow descent into madness.

      Note: There is a now a policy in my syllabus that addresses “text-speak.” Totally not part of MLA format. Yet.

      • Mingusententia (wow, that was a mouthful) – Thanks so much for your comments. Glad you liked my blog!

        I’ve told many teachers who replied to this blog post that they have my deepest sympathies for dealing with students who use English as a second language to text-speak. I applaud you for dealing with that on a daily basis without causing anyone bodily harm.

  2. Oh I have been annoyed by short-text spellings too . I try my level best not to use SMS-english and I prefer the old way of “talking” to people 🙂 Great post 🙂

  3. As an English graduate, I find I frequently have to resist the urge to punch people in the face for their misuse of apostrophes. I’m not proud of it.

    Brilliant post, so true! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

    • LOL (I know, I’m a hypocrite for using that, but I did actually LOL at your comment)! 🙂 Misuse of apostrophes is a trigger for me as well, but not nearly as much as the use of unfamiliar acronyms that I have to waste my time looking up.

      Got a new one from my daughter yesterday – “Hey. NMJC. HBU?” I had no idea what the hell it meant, much less why it was a question. Thanks (one again) to Google, I found out she was saying “Not much, just chilling. How about you?” Really? If I didn’t love her so much, I’d kill her.

    • Funny you mentioned that problem…

      First of all, nice post and congratulations on the Freshly Pressed issue (that’s super-cool). Second, I’m a teenager and I speak English as a second language.

      Recently I discovered that some of us (teenagers) don’t know the difference between “your” and “you’re”; “were”, “we’re” and “where” or “than” and “then”… I believe this is more important than the misuse of apostrophes, but I don’t understand how so many people can’t understand their mistakes…

      • So true! There’s also it’s and its — I saw two instances just this morning — one from a professional writer — and I haven’t even had a full cup of coffee. I keep trying to overlook these things but I see the credibility of the writer (so-called) decline right before my eyes.

    • No Hook, you don’t. You are not missing anything important at all. Infact I have a theory that too much personal media device use is going to cause a devolution due to the fact that we are looking DOWN all the time.
      I use shortened texting depending on who I am texting with. I conform to the other person’s style.
      An intersting post and great choice for FP Congrats, GWDTI (nice acronym)! AmberLena

      • theamberlight – Amen, sista! I agree. All too often when I go out to eat at a restaurant, and take a look around at the other patrons, I’ll see an entire table of people plugged into their iPhones instead of interacting with the people right in front of them.

        GWDTI?? Gyros with donuts tastes icky? Probably not. You’re going to go make me look that up, aren’t you? Not nice…. and here I thought we were going to be friends 😉

        • If you look UP at the top of you home page to your blog….you will find it! LOL! I forget that the blog name and the user name do not have to be the same! Mine are, so I just picked yours up, instead of MWFLJ :o) And gyros with donuts might not be as bad as it sounds. The steakburger sandwich served on a glazed donut (for the bun) at the Sate Fair in Indiana was a hit, even with my husband and daughter. I did not try it! Have a great day, Lindaj! 🙂

        • Amber – WOW… I can’t believe I didn’t pick up on the fact that GWDTI was an acronym for my own blog site (is there an emoticon for being painfully embarrassed?). I think it’s time for another cup of tea to get the ol’ grey matter fired up again… or maybe I’ll just start a caffeine drip.

          P.S. – A steakburger sandwich served on a donut bun? Did that come with defibrillator paddles?

    • And I thought I was the only one on the planet without a cell phone! I just go back and forth between my cave at home and my cave at work (both equipped with computers, of course).

    • Outcast – I think it’s a step backwards too; certainly from actually speaking with each other. There is no way to tell the inflection, tone, or mood of the texter – which is why I’ve begun to rely heavily on emoticons to help get my point across… but I’ll save that rant for another blog 🙂 (see what I mean??)

  4. This is brilliant. I also was very staunchly against the ‘textspeak’. And I’m still only a Senior in college. But I have found myself using it more and more, especially when I want to fit a message in only one text.

    • Meandtheworld90- The thing that most surprised me when I was reading the comments was all the young people who also hated using text-speak. I assumed that people who had essentially grown up with it, would naturally embrace it. SO happy to find out otherwise!

  5. My sister’s youngest writes all her Facebook posts as text messages. If she has time to sit down at the computer then she should have time to write out the words. I can’t figure her out half the time. When I get emails using texting shorthand, I’ve been known to correct them and send it back. Or I did back when I could figure out what they really meant. I can’t anymore. I’m usually not the grammar/spelling nazi when online but the texting shorthand has me seeing red.

    • urbannight – Text-speak used in emails or facebook status updates makes me NUTS. Just no reason for it. None. Especially because it is common knowledge that employers regularly check the facebook pages of potential employees. And I don’t know too many people who would hire someone that sounds totally incoherent.

  6. I’ve gotten so good at texting I do whole blog posts at http://www.unnecessarywords.com from my phone. I rock a Droid 2, its (my biggest grammar flaw is I never know the difference between its and it’s; hopefully this is right) great for full internet access with an intuitive qwerty keyboard for fast typing. I can knock out 500 words in a few minutes if I know what I’m going to write about.

  7. I should add; I never use textspeak (what we used to call 1337speak when it was just used by gamers). I a big fan of words and don’t understand acronyms unless they’re established. My little brother (not that little, he’ll be 25 soon) will send me texts or emails filled with acronyms and abbreviations and will resend them a few minutes later because I just won’t answer them.

  8. heeeyyyyyyyyy :). Love this post. I was once a person who used ridiculous acronyms and all that but I recently put my foot down, and I must say that blogginf is really helping me out with my grammar because I am trying so hard to be proper and understood :)..

    • luckyluwi – Thanks for posting! Glad you enjoyed my blog 🙂

      So, while I’m trying to use more text speak (to appease my daughter), you’re trying to use less… maybe we can meet in the middle somewhere 🙂

    • mycookinglifebypatty (whew! That was a mouthful) – Thanks so much for the congrats and for posting feedback!

      I can’t even imagine not wearing my glasses/contacts when I text. I’m so blind that I’m not sure I could tell if I was texting on my cellphone or the TV remote 🙂

  9. It’s like a marmite thing. You love it or you hate it. I for example send about two texts a decade, where as my brother needs to have his thumb surgically removed from his phone.
    Good luck to those of you moving with the times…text me when you get there!

    • susannecollier – Okay, I’m about to sound WAY too American now… but what the hell is marmite? And why is there such a strong love/hate thing going on with it?

      As for the texting, I think I fall right in between you and your brother. Personally, I think the grass is definitely greener on your side of the fence 🙂

      • Is Marmite an English thing? I didn’t realise. Okay it’s sort of like tar, but you spread it on toast and eat it. I think it’s the vegetarian equivalent of Bovril, which you may or may not have State-side, which is also like tar, but tastes like beef.
        (If the makers of Marmite or Bovril are reading this…please don’t sue me, it’s only an opinion.)
        Right, I’m off to have a cup of tea, which is a hot drink that the English believe has the power to resolve all of life’s problems. And then I’m going to read about your breasts, as the headline caught my eye just before I wrote this comment. 🙂

  10. I have always been against text-speak as well, and still stubbornly refuse to use most of it unless I ran out of characters. Even then, I’d just send another, or now with my iPhone, just not worry about it. Who needs it? Plain old real English will work. 🙂

    Congrats on Freshly Pressed!

    • Samantha (wow, a real name!) – Thanks for the congrats and for posting feedback!

      I’m amazed to find out how many people out there hate text speak. I seriously thought I was alone… well, maybe not entirely alone. I was pretty sure there were some senior citizens in my camp to keep me company 🙂 Glad to find out otherwise!

  11. Loved this and with you on the ratlin if it means a book deal … my texting is still lots or words, I have’t given up just yet … and that is what you have the predictive setting for

    • Jensine – Thanks so much for posting feedback!

      Yes, I’m hoping to land a book deal someday. And if that day ever comes, I will definitely have to lock myself away in a remote cabin in the woods with no distractions… kind of like the literary equivalent of the “Uni-bomber” 😉

      As for predictive setting, I really don’t like it. I find that my phone gets it wrong more times than not. There is an entire website dedicated to funny texts that were goofed up because of predictive language: http://www.damnyouautocorrect.com/

      Funny stuff… unless you’re the one sending out a text to your mother that talks about your “crotch pot” recipe. Ew.

    • Kathryn (wow, another real name!) – I can’t even imagine the kinds of things you see on a regular basis in your writing class. You must have the patience of a saint to deal with your students… either that or you’re heavily medicated 😉

      Thanks for the congrats and for posting feedback!

  12. I still insist on proper grammar, punctuation and capitalization in my texts, but I don’t have to keep up with a teen’s rapid-fire messaging 🙂 Great post!

    • Aschmid3 – Yes, my daughter wore me down with her constant bombardment of texts. It was like texting torture to try and stick to my no text-speak rule… eventually I just cracked under the pressure. Within a month she had all but gotten me to admit my name, rank, and serial number. 🙂

  13. And I still refuse to text regularly. We refused to get it with our account. My wife and I may text each other a handful of times a month and may receive a couple of texts each, every month.

    I’m not going to cripple my fingers to tell you something I could do quicker and more easily by voice.

    If you can’t answer your phone or take a call, that’s your problem. Not mine. If you don’t want to hear from me, again, your problem, not mine.

    • If I didn’t have young children, I definitely would have taken your route of the no texting plan on my cellphone. Prior to a year ago (before we got our daughter her first cellphone), I almost never sent out texts. Ah… the good ol’ days 🙂

      Stick to your guns and live the text-free life I never got to live!!

  14. You had me laughing the entire post! I don’t know why I like to extend words to be longer than they should be either! I must say I am quite guilty of many of the above mentioned. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!!

    • Samology – Thanks so much for the congrats and for the feedback! Glad I got some giggles out of you 🙂 At the end of the day, it’s hearing comments like yours that make writing my blog worth the time and effort.

      For making my day, I’m willing to give you a full pardon for your text-speak crimes. But something tells me you’re going to be a repeat offender 🙂

  15. I think that one of the most annoying things in the entire WORLD is when people use “text-speak” when they’re actually writing a professional email, text, etc. I have actually had people from other businesses email me using “u”, and “plz”.

    It drives me insane.

    Excellent post!! 🙂

  16. Absolutely, well said! I re-call when I was about 9 and we would chat to our school mates on msn. We would always compete with each other to see who was the most savvy in ‘text-language’. I became pro at it.

    Perhaps two years later I leave the tribal language and decided I would start looking and acting intelligent by using the real language of English.

    Great Post enjoyed it.
    Katie

    • Katieraspberry – Thanks so much for posting your feedback! We welcome you into the fold of our little anti-text speak group. It’s a nice group of people… but a little long-winded at times 😉

  17. “On the rare occasion I texted someone, I stubbornly dug my heels in and refused to use text speak.” I’m like this now. I’m a curmudgeon and proud of it.

    • twentyandthenwhat – I’m not sure which I felt first – the joy that you thought my post was funny or the emotional blow of being compared to your mother.

      I’m not really THAT old, am I? I’m sure you’re mother is wonderful, but I’m only 38 (although, now I FEEL about 107). Looks like the next stop is dentures and depends….. 😉

      • No! Please don’t feel insulted in ANY way. I love my mom, and I think she is the funniest person in the world. I genuinely only meant the comparison in the best way 🙂 I loved your post!

  18. i’ve been saying – and i plan to write a blog post saying – that the “social” networks are actually “anti-social” because they allow us to rely on keyboards, thumbs, and tiny screens instead of sitting across a table and being “social.”

  19. I think we are siblings of another mother -sorry, I’m trying to be humorous. I too respect and appreciate good spelling, proper grammar, and the regimens of the English language. Please keep writing and I’ll keep reading. Maybe we can be BFF (Ha Ha). Take care.

  20. Great post! It sure made me smile and think. 🙂

    Just yesterday, my sister and I went shopping and she took forever. Even though she was in speaking-distance, I texted her “hurry up women, I’m hungry lol”. It’s certainly not how we communicate, but that’s just how we joke sometimes. 😉

    • Chana – This cracked me up. I do this sort of text joking with my daughter sometimes. Especially if it’s a particularly “girlie” joke and my husband is in the room with us.

      Thanks for posting feedback!

  21. Excellent post! My texting life (:p) usually varies. Some days I’ll be texting family and friends constantly, and another day I won’t even pick up my cell phone.

    • Wes – Thanks for posting your feedback! I’m the same way – texting is usually feast or famine for me as well. I’ll go days without sending out a single text and then there will be a glut of them (especially if my husband and daughter send them out at the same time and I’m trying to keep up with two separate conversations at once.) Doesn’t take me long to beg them to pick up the phone and CALL me.

  22. Haha 😛 I got my first cell phone in middle school and all of my friends and I referred to it as “the red brick”- a Nextel walkie-talkie style phone with a red cover with its primary use to contact my parents… Over the years I switched phones too many times to count because of problems but one thing stayed the same, texting was the phone’s primary purpose. My first smartphone was a Blackberry and I loved it, until I traded it in for an iPhone… Now my momma has an iPhone and loves it!

    • Life’s a bowl – I think most people your age (you look young in your pic) use texting as their primary means of communication. When you grow up with it, it’s just a normal part of life. But when I was a teen (oh god, I’m about to really sound OLD now), I spent most of my life on the phone talking to my friends. Literally HOURS. My mom used to have to threaten my life to get me to hang up.

      In that way, I guess the younger generation is lucky – you’ve all got your own phones and you don’t have anyone hurrying you off… should you ever actually pick up the phone to CALL anyone, that is 🙂

  23. Absolutely loved this! I used to only spell in full, capitalized and punctuated, in return received the title of “English professor”
    Quite funny really seeing as I could type full words faster than the people who abbreviated at the time. Great post, brought back some funny “texting” memories. 🙂

    • Posh Pink Geek – Glad you enjoyed my post! Nice to see that there are other “English professors” out there. I’m not as lucky as you though – no matter how much I text, I still take FOREVER to type it all out. The keyboard is just too damn tiny!! I’m always pushing the wrong buttons and having to go back and edit the message. I can’t send the messages out with typos – I hate those even more than text speak.

  24. Great post…
    Sometimes I do feel the same and try to resort back to the original writing style with complete words and punctuation. But it is impossible to continue it for long.

  25. Very nice post! It was fun to read words like cellasaurus, technologically challenged etc 😀

    I agree! It would be better to use actual language on all communications. I prefer to use text lingos only in chat as it is easy and saves time 🙂

    Very nice post said humorously!

  26. lol i luv ur post!
    I’m kidding, I also hate text speak. But I do love your post. I refuse to shorten words when I send texts messages & have been called a grammar nazi before. But I’m also a textaholic and always on my phone.

  27. Love the “Heyyyyy” graphic with explanation! I still text in full words and sentences, but I waffle between hating text language and embracing it. Language is sort of a living thing and I suppose it’s going to change whether we like it or not. However, I absolutely judge people’s level of self-respect based on the writing they use in texts and on Facebook. If they don’t mind looking like morons in writing, then what does that say about the level of care and attention they’ll pay to anything else in life?

    • Ambergravitt – Thanks for your thoughtful response. I admit I’m guilty of this as well…

      …”However, I absolutely judge people’s level of self-respect based on the writing they use in texts and on Facebook. If they don’t mind looking like morons in writing, then what does that say about the level of care and attention they’ll pay to anything else in life?”

      I try not to judge, but I think it’s crazy that people use text speak on their status updates or in their emails. I think it comes off sounding lazy and/or ignorant. Which I know might not be the case. But still can’t help thinking it.

  28. I love it. I still very rarely go in for text speak and use on the basic ones. Until only recently did I understand what ‘lol’ stood for, I couldn’t understand why so many people were spreading ‘lots of love’ until someone kindly pointed out it stood for ‘Laugh out Loud’!

    • Lily – Thanks for your response! I give you props for being able to use your cellphone like a computer – I’m YEARS away from getting to that point. I just hate fussing with the tiny keyboard and tiny screen… makes me feel bigger and clumsier than I already am 🙂

      • Oh yes, that is the problem. XD I dislike the tiny keyboard and screen. It took me about 20 minutes to write that comment. Ahh… I don’t want to use my phone to comment anymore. XD The screen is so tiny and so slow, too. It makes me a bit dizzy. I’m on my computer typing this now which is a lot more easier. No problem! 😀

  29. All my colleagues and bestfriends used to teased for not having my cellphone with me everytime. I don’t love texting at all. I’m a lazy texter just like you. I’m a fast computer keyboard typer but not on cellphone. lol

    • Cherylime – YES! Finally another clumsy thumbsy person 🙂 I can type ten times faster on a computer keyboard than on my cellphone… which is why I’ll never use my phone for facebook status updates or blog entries.

  30. I’m 16 and a writer as well. I have an android luckily (an LG Optimus) that is well-equipped with a fabulous voice-to-text activator. Because, much like yourself, I cannot stand text language, so I now can effortlessly speak my text-books into the phone without using my stumbling fingers. I, however, am still up on my soap box, which is extremely high. Despite the fact that I own a phone, an iPod and a laptop, I do believe that technology will lead to the ultimate demise of us human beings. We really do need to go back to simpler times, where communication was meaningful. The English language is my passion. I shan’t let it be destroyed!

  31. Prfkly gr8. Thx.
    This is so well done, I thank you for the laughter! I can’t wait for your thoughts on auto-correct! Congratulations on freshly pressed! All the best in your continued success. Kris

    • Bountiful Giving – Thanks so much for your congrats and your sweet comments. I have nothing to say about auto-correct that this website hasn’t already said:

      http://www.damnyouautocorrect.com/

      Very funny stuff, you should check it out. But I warn you that you’ll probably end up wasting an hour of your time scrolling through all the goofed up text conversations. 🙂

  32. Funny post! Some of us are so obsessed with texting that we would experience withdrawal symptoms if we didn’t have it for a day.

    • Joe – Thanks so much for your comments. Glad you enjoyed my blog!

      I think the chances of me getting addicted to texting is about as likely as me getting hooked on mopping my kitchen floors. 🙂

  33. I absolutely hate text-speak, and often don’t read something on a message board or what have you once I see a bunch of textspeak and annoying, lazy Internet abbreviations. (My all-time least-favorite, nails on a chalkboard textspeak term is calling a husband a “DH” and one’s kids a “DS,” “DD,” “DC,” or “LO”!) My 25 year old little brother texts a lot, but even he thinks textspeak is dumb and lazy, and always writes words out in full. I don’t even use my thumb when I write a text. I do most of it with just my left pointer finger while my right hand holds the phone.

    • CarrieAnne – Thanks for your comments. I learned something new from your post – I had never heard of DH (or any of the other acronyms you listed) before… of course, I had to go google them, so thanks for that 😉

  34. Excellent post! I’ve always been a holdout on the whole text speak thing. Most of it is just unnecessary, especially with the qwerty keyboards. I will admit to using u, and 2, and a few other shorthands. But when people do it for whole sentences, it’s just confusing! Ooh, and text speak on regular writing or Facebook posts, just ew.

    • kayennepeppa – Thanks for posting your comments! I just recently learned what ‘qwerty’ meant… psyched that I didn’t have to go to dictionary.com to figure that out when I read your post. Made me feel smart 🙂

      I agree with your sentiments about text speak and status updates (as do many of the other people who responded to my blog post). There’s just no reason not to take a few minutes and type it out.

  35. I too stick to grammar and punctuation. However, my phone is not easy to text on and my tech skills are very sad so I text as little as possible. It comes in handy in communication with offspring and 20-something siblings. I’ve always been a scy-fi fan but the real deal makes me feel stupid.

    • jjbailey – Thanks for posting your comments! Glad I’m not the only one with clumsy thumbs 🙂 I think technology is wonderful, but like you, it makes me feel like I just crawled out from underneath a rock. I think it’s how Fred Flinstone would feel if he suddenly woke up in the age of the Jetsons. Wow… talk about dating myself! 🙂

  36. zomg awsm post LOL!!!111

    Like pretty much everyone else who’s posted, I’m very much against “text speak”…texting in general, now that I think about it. What bothers me the most about it is how rude people can be! I wish some of my friends would realize that texting while having a face-to-face conversation with me is equivalent to turning around and talking to a different friend in the middle of our conversation.

    • Claudia – Thanks for posting! You made an excellent point that I haven’t heard yet…

      …”What bothers me the most about it is how rude people can be! I wish some of my friends would realize that texting while having a face-to-face conversation with me is equivalent to turning around and talking to a different friend in the middle of our conversation.”

      A thousand times, YES!!!! Beyond text-speak and all the rest of it, I hate it when people text incessantly when you’re trying to have a conversation. SO rude. Major pet peeve for me.

  37. Text speak first became popular through instant messaging. I suck at texting (I’m 24, most people my age have grasped it) but I understand most acronyms because most of them were first invented through instant messaging (by contrast, I’m a ridiculously fast typer on a computer). I’m sure there are new ones I don’t know these days, but we can thank AOL instant messaging for LOL and TTYL. I think texting has replaced instant messaging… does anyone even use AIM anymore?

    • Amelie – I had totally forgotten about IMing. You’re right, people who used IM probably came up with the bulk of the text speak lingo we use today. The one bonus to IMing (for me) is the ability to use a standard size keyboard instead of the wee one that is on my phone 🙂

  38. Great post! Your blog is so funny, we love the heyyyy picture. Following now, and congrats on being freshly pressed!
    2chicgurls
    2chicgurls.com

    • 2chicgurls – Thanks so much for the congrats and the sweet comments about my blog. I never know if I’m going to be as funny to other people as I am to myself – in my head I’m hysterical! 🙂

      So happy to have you two as followers. Hope I can keep you laughing!

  39. As a writer, I was very anti-text speak for a long time even though I myself was a teen when texting hit. I still try to use grammar and capitalization (and I’m still on an ancient flip phone with no keyboard since I’m poor,) but I’ve learned to embrace text words as new words. I think there’s a subtle (yet important) difference between “Oh my God.” and “OMG.” I’ve started treating text speak as new vocabulary. That’s why I rather like blogging – it’s one of the few places you can use this new vocabulary with the rest of the English language.

    Just my two cents. Thanks for sharing! Great post. 🙂

    • Rachel – As much as I hate texting now, I hated it ten times worse on my flip phone. Hitting those numbers over and over again to get the different letters to show up. I give you major props for sticking to your guns about proper English on that phone… I’m sure I would have caved long before my daughter’s texting torture if I still had to use that thing.

      I think using the obvious and popular acronyms like, OMG, LOL, etc. is okay because almost no one needs to decipher them anymore. Like you said, it’s like they have become new words. But when the acronym extends to three, four, or more letters, you lost me, and I usually have to turn to my BFF (there’s another one!), Google, for help. 🙂

  40. It’s a strange society we’ve become isn’t it. I’m and old-fashioned lover of the English language and punctation, texting or otherwise – I will not conform to this ‘text speak’ nonsense! Very funny post!

    • W&G – Thanks so much for your response. I love hearing about other people that relish this wonderful language of ours. There is so much expression and creativity to be had, why would anyone want to short change themselves?

    • ayasonice – Thanks so much for your comment! I thought I had heard all the different acronyms to express laughter (LOL, ROFL, LMAO, etc), but it seems there are always new ones – I had to turn to my BFF, Google, to find out that DWL meant “dying with laughter”…. thanks for that 😉

      And thanks for following me!!

  41. I was exactly the same way. I have converted a bit. I use short-cuts ometimes, but still capitalize and use punctuation.

  42. I found this very funny. in the Philippines we are sometimes referred to as the ‘text capital of the world’. and it was because of the phenomenon called Jejemon. It is a whole different kind of alien text language. Like you, I refuse to adapt to this lingo, as it is an attack on the written word. I use the T9 function to make sure I do.

    • Chef Ivan – Text capital of the world? Sounds like a very scary place for someone like me 😉

      I had never heard of ‘jejemon’ before, but a few responses on this blog post mentioned it. Sounds even harder to grasp than regular text speak. As if it needed to get any harder…..

  43. I think the biggest victim in this all is the contraction. Seems poor little apostrophe doesn’t exist in Textlandia.

    I try to stick to standard English when texting. It helps when phones like the Blackberry or iPhone autocorrect for you when you slip and succumb to the text-pressure.

    I’m afraid text speak starts early though. I had a Kindergartener write BFF all over her journal the other day. I told them if they want to write they’ll be best friends forever, they should use the words. Then another five-year-old told me I must not know that BFF is a word. *stare*

    • angelsail – LOL, wow they’re starting young, huh? I’ve been getting comments from a lot of college professors, but you’re my first kindergarten teacher! Scary that they know the beginnings of text speak before they can really read, huh? *shudder*

  44. don’t utilize, use
    don’t analyze, think
    don’t rationalize, lie
    don’t memorize, remember
    don’t terrorize, scare
    don’t euthanize, kill
    don’t satirize, mock
    don’t agonize, worry
    don’t vocalize, talk
    don’t proselytize, preach
    don’t penalize, punish
    don’t romanticize, love
    don’t vaporize, zap

  45. I’m glad I’m not the only one who writes novels for texts and uses correct punctuation and grammar in them too. Go grammatically correct or go home.

  46. Okay, I’ve read a lot of these little comments about not understanding why teens (myself included) use text speak.. Well I will tell you why I personally use it and don’t at times, It’s all about saving time, if I am in a rush and I want to get my point across quickly Text lingo.. otherwise… Ehh.. Text Language isn’t just about Teenkind, its about speed and saying what you want to say without having to take all afternoon to write it! 😀

    • Dj – Thanks for commenting! I get it, I do. Especially after hundreds of text messages with my daughter. If I sat down to compose a book every time she texted me, I’d have to get my cellphone permanently fused to my thumbs. I do use text speak when I feel the need… the need for SPEED (Top Gun reference in there, lol). 🙂

    • MomMeetsBlog – Thanks for posting! Kids have a way of wearing you down, don’t they? Hold tight to your apostrophes because they are only thing that separates us from the teenage textaholics! Well, that and our inability to text with our eyes shut 🙂

  47. I agree with you, I am still desperately hanging on to correct spelling and grammar in text messaging. And I have had a mobile phone for at least thirteen years now. Hang in there, you are not alone!

  48. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    Wouldn’t it be fun if we could respond back to our kids in actual stenography (yes, legal assistant in my past life)?!

    On the bright side, our children should be phenomenal note takers during their three hour lectures in College/University, smile!

    • bratandbabybrat – Thanks so much for your congrats and your comments.

      Good point about taking notes… guess it would be a major time saver in the classroom, assuming the kid could decipher their own text lingo a week or two later 🙂

  49. I absolutely LOVE all your posts, but this one stands out the most. I had a MAJOR problem with incorporating text talk into my school papers. It was So bad that I actually had to give up my life in order to fix it!
    Cant wait to read more of your work!

    Punk Princess ❤

    • PunkPrince55 – Thanks so much for reading all my posts! I love knowing that you liked “My Two Left Thumbs” enough to go hunting for some of my other posts 🙂

      I’m intrigued by the backstory behind your comment, “I actually had to give up my life in order to fix it!” There’s an interesting blog post in there somewhere….

    • abbieprescott – Thanks for posting your comments.

      I think “Save English Grammar!” would make a good t-shirt… of course, you’re credibility might be a tad sullied if you go the “SEG” route 😉

  50. Oh, kids these days. I have younger siblings, so I’ve been able to decipher most acronyms easily. The “yyyy” makes no sense to me, either. But the thing that gets to me the most? They make their smiley faces backward. (: ANNOYING.

  51. “Thankfully, since last year Meghan has filled up her cell phone address book with numerous friends and family members, and no longer relies on me as her primary texting buddy. My thumbs are eternally grateful.”

    Hahaha, that line is the most funny. Its all true though. Its making it so spelling doesn’t even matter anymore

    • Tyler – Thanks for posting! Glad you enjoyed my blog 🙂

      Personally, I totally suck at spelling. But the difference between me and most of the teenagers out there who also suck at spelling is that I care enough to go look up the proper spelling on dictionary.com. I visit that damn site at least four or five times while I’m writing a blog post. Guess I didn’t pay very much attention in English class 😉

  52. A good read, true and funny. I don’t like texting because I don’t have the patience for it. The shorter the better for me (grammar aside) although when I do use a u instead of a you, my kids say; ‘Dad, are you trying to be cool?’. They have learned to send me messages that require just ‘ok’ for an answer. Bruce

    • Bruce – Your comment got a chuckle out of me 🙂 You can’t win with kids, huh? Either they make fun of you for writing things out longhand or for trying to use text speak like them. I say we all start texting in Shakespearian sonnets and see what they think of that!

        • I’m trying like hell to respond to everyone, and at the same time, get sleep, eat, and have time to let my brain do nothing more than take up space in my skull.

          I think the responses are slowing down a bit now, so it gives me the chance to make some headway. I think replying to people’s comments is important. If they can take the time to post something, then so can I…. I’m just a little outnumbered at the moment 🙂

  53. Love this post!!! I remember about 5 years ago when my son was a 12th grader, we took a trip to San Francisco for a scholarship audition. He had the popular SIDEKICK phone and he texted for 2 days and nights NONSTOP! I felt like I was alone the whole time! I vividly remember that click clack sound from the FLIP SLIDE of the Sidekick. I heard taps all night from the keys! I was convinced my son would never survive in the normal “real” world!! Today, I have become a clone of my son. Only difference is that I am a teacher and I just can’t leave out punctuation or destroy too many words by creating my own shortcuts!
    Thanks for sharing!!
    BTW, have you seen the senior citizen Text Codes? Hysterical!!

    • myjoyteam – Thanks for taking the time to post such a thoughtful response. That was a funny story about your son…. you have WAY more patience than me. The minute I woke up to the sound of click clacking keys, that cellphone would have been launched across the room.

      I haven’t seen the senior citizen text codes, but now that you’ve piqued my curiosity, I’ve got to go check them out…

  54. This is the funniest thing I’ve read all month! It’s good to know I’m not the only reluctant convert to the world of texting. Or the only one whose thumbs aren’t as naturally opposable as all that.

  55. Every generation struggles to understand the next one coming along, language style and manner changes, new words are added to the dictionary, meanings change significantly from one generation to the other. Technology it appears has only exacerbated this.

    if you want to communicate effectively with the younger generation adaptation is the key, without becoming that embarrassing parent that tries to relive their own youth.

    Although personally my pet hate is text speak, I am a text novel writer I am afraid.

    • lipstick – I agree, a meeting of the minds (usually somewhere in the middle of the two generations) is necessary if the communication lines are going to stay open. And with a teenage girl, keeping those lines open is getting harder and harder….

  56. Couldn’t have been a more perfect interpretation. From one mother who stubbornly will not abbreviate to another: thank you. Can you imagine what horrors our grandchildren will bring upon our language!? Oh, I shudder. 😉

    • Laurie – LOL, I don’t even want to think about what new and unintelligible forms of technology loom on the horizon…. whatever they are, I’m sure I’ll find a way to screw those up too 😉

  57. I LOVE this post hah, I was recently badgered in regards to typing out full words while texting. I’m seventeen and very much respect the genuine value of actual communication (and real words)
    ….and not to mention, I still have one of those dinosaur phones..
    Congratulations on being fresh-pressed!

    • nbdetmers – Thanks for the congrats and your comments!

      So, you’re seventeen, still have a dino-phone, and love to text in full sentences?? I feel like I just stumbled on a rare archeological find 🙂 Love it!

  58. Yes! This is very true. This may apply to all nations. Like in our country. We have the so-called “Jejemons”. They are the ones who use a word with the spelling wrong. They make such words very long compared to its original spelling.

    • girlbehindthepen – Thanks for taking the time to post your comments. This is the second time I’ve heard about the ‘jejemons’… I’m really curious to read more about this type of texting. Is it very different from American text-speak?

      • There are some similarities though. But it’s so unusual that if you would read it, you’ll get annoyed (well that’s my opinion) 😀 I’ll give you example. I’ll use our language which is Filipino because that is the common words that they use. They use numbers to replace the original letters. But some only do add extra letters in the original context. The example that i’ll give you is what I think the worst of all.
        1. 3ow powhz- Elow po- “Hello po”
        2. Wuht 4r3 you doin’?- “What are you doing?”

    • Shell!!! I almost lost you among all of these stranger comments. For once, it’s not just you and four other people commenting on my post – YAY! Thanks for always being so supportive and faithful with your feedback. If I can keep you laughing, I’ll consider my job well done. 🙂

    • mburris2000 – Thanks for your response!

      If we were playing poker I’d say, “I’ll see your daughter texting from the next room, and raise you my daughter texting me from the next couch.” 🙂

  59. Hurrah! I wish you could all bring some soap boxes down to the bottom of the world and shake up some of the local language butchers for allowing the cursed acronyms and plain errors to be allowed into schools (http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/New_Zealand_students_able_to_use_txt_language_in_exams). It’s one thing to succumb to the speed of cellular communication amongst family; a whole other thing to let such English subordination to seep into the fabric of education. Outrageous, I know!

    • Meetal – WOW, there are no words… they let text speak in schools?? CRAZY. It’s bound to seep into the schools from student to student and on the occasional botched essay. But to put an educational stamp of approval on it is a totally different ball game.

  60. Hysterical and so true! My texts are still book length but those I’m texting typically know less text speak than I do, i still have to run to google if anyone uses it well. I keep thinking I’ll teach myself but seems like a lot of work when my thumbs aren’t suffering yet. 🙂

    • beingjulz – Thanks for your response! I say we stick to writing our text-books… I don’t know about you, but aside from my blog, those longwinded text messages are my only other form of ‘publication’ 🙂

  61. I think the scariest thing for me about my smart phone is that there are actually days now when I will pull out my phone and start writing on it, rather than on my computer. For whatever reason, sometimes thumbing it seems to work better for me than typing…..

    • Jack – Thanks for posting! I don’t know if I will EVER get to the point where I favor my phone (should I ever get a smartphone) over my computer when it comes to writing. My crappy eyesight coupled with my clumsy thumbs make writing on something the size of a postcard incredibly difficult (I’m making myself sound like a 100 year old granny, aren’t I?). But when I try to write a really long text on my phone, I spend more time cursing over my typos than writing creatively. 🙂

  62. Hilarious and it’s not too late. You can still come back to the resistance, we will win in the long game with our spelled out words and insistence on grammatically correct paragraphs painstakingly typed out one letter at a time.

    • customerservicevoodoo – Thanks for the offer, but I’m afraid I’m trapped on the dark side… at least until my daughter grows out of her hyper-texting phase. Go on without me and fight the good fight!!! I’ll be laying here, with mortally wounded thumbs, cheering you on from the sidelines.

  63. I must admit that I’m not a big fan of texing. Probably because most of the texts that I get are from someone texting just for the sake of texting. Just to have something to do. I use textspeak, now, because it gets my responses out faster.
    In the beginning it was like
    Them: I’m going to stop and get pizza on my way home.
    Me: Oh good. Make sure that it has pepperoni and sausage. Oh, and get me a soda, too. Thanks. See you when you get here.

    Now, I’m like
    Them: I’m going to stop and get pizza on my way home
    Me: k

    • princess – You’ve had the same phone for five years? Isn’t that against some kind of teenager/twenty-something code of conduct? I think you’d better reread your youngin’ contract because it clearly states, in paragraph T, section 398…

      “No one under the age of twenty-five should ever be found carrying a cellphone more than six months old. Whether you can afford it or not (if not, see the section on learning how to pimp yourself to cover your cellphone bill), the newest model of your cellphone must be on your person at all times, preferably in your back pocket or stuffed inside your Ugg boots. Any breech of this contract will result in the immediate termination of your young person privileges (ie. excessive drinking with no resulting hangover the next day, high metabolism, abundance of energy, fully functioning long term memory, being able to text with your eyes closed, etc).

      I’d watch out if I were you…..

      • I have managed to avoid this rule because of the following exemptions.
        1) Phones that have a shitload of phone charms will always attracted more attention to the phone charms than to the phone. Thus people don’t notice that you don’t have a new phone.
        2) My phone is covered in diamantés. Every once in a while I like to switch it up.
        Gives me the look of a new phone instantly.

        Several of my young people privileges have been voided. High metabolism, abundance of energy and fully functioning long term memory.
        All because I took up knitting and refuse to change my phone.

        The life of a grandmother scorned teenager is hard.

  64. This post definitely brings up questions of WHY, exactly, standardized grammar and spelling are so important. As long as we can all understand each other (or, at the very least, access references that help us decode terms we don’t know), I suppose that these short cuts are a communication blessing rather than a grammatical curse.

    Of course, texting also means that kids today are getting more exposure to writing informally for an audience, which can easily translate to becoming a better writer in general. That doesn’t mean that prolonged texting exchanges don’t still make my thumbs hurt, though.

    Great post, and congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    • tutordoctor – Thanks for your congrats and your thoughtful response.

      I think the only reason grammar and spelling are important (in the case of texting) is because school age kids (from elementary right on up to college) can’t seem to turn text-speak off when they’re doing their school work – and that’s a problem. There were a lot of grumbling teachers who posted on my blog entry, and they all say the same thing – kids don’t seem to know how to write anymore. And that’s tragic. I’d really hate to see writing fall under the ‘lost art’ category.

  65. Great piece and I totally agree with the texting. I could not manage the Iphone so last year went with Blackberry Torch…it has the touch screen but I never use it to type…use the real keyboard. I am a youth counsellor and our service is phone, on-line counselling (most youths write normal…umm, I mean my old fashion way) and we just started IM Chat a few times a week. Surprisingly the youths use proper grammer and regular words…rarely short form which means they know how to differentiate between chatting with a friend and a professional…just like you have taught your daughter:)

    • ntouch2cher – Hearing about the kids you counsel was like a breath of fresh air. It’s nice to know that there are kids out there who can differentiate between their texting world and their school work. There have been a lot of teachers on here who have said otherwise. I think you’re lucky to be working with these kids, and that you’re being saved the daily headache of trying to explain why “cuz” isn’t a real word 😉

  66. My fingers are old, my hands are clumsy and I hate texting. I am the definition of “ham fisted” whenever I try to use a small electronic device to do anything. Give me a big old keyboard any day of the week, thankyouverymuch.

  67. This post was long overdue. I am so happy to have found it. As a twenty two year old who has participated in texting since the ripe age of sixteen I must contest that I NEVER abbreviate. I always us correct punctuation and capitalization. Can’t say much for my spelling, but oh well. I did have a fellow employee, who was older and just beginning to text (without my standards of the English Language), tell me that she was always afraid to text me because I used such big words and didn’t abbreviate.

    Anyways, love this. 🙂

    • uncovertheunusual – Wow, you’re taking the whole writer’s movement one step further – actually scaring people away with your powers of proper grammar! I think you might have to run for the anti-text speak president. I’d vote for you 😉

  68. I can totally relate to this post! I may sometimes start a text with an acronym for quick sending. However habit catches on and it soon has all the necessary words, letters and punctuations right down to the full stop. God, that pisses me off more than anything else. How difficult is it to not leave that poor guy out!! Thank you for sharing, thoroughly enjoyed it. 🙂

    • Contentsoul – I find I do the same thing – start out with acronyms and then go back and fix them because I don’t like the way it looks. Which I guess is kind of silly given the fact that the person on the other end of the text is usually using text speak too.

      Thanks for your comments!

  69. Hi.

    Korean here residing in Philippines for awhile and the problem of texting here is much worse than what you guys are experiencing in the west. Not only they shorten the words (i.e. You -> u), not only they acronymize every coined terms and internet slang you could think of, but they also do alter the spelling to look cool (i.e. using the letter ‘q’ as an alternative to using the letter ‘g’, salvage is spelled zalvaje by the masses). Oh and have you heard of the camel caps? (i.e. iT iS sOo DiSgUsTiNg!!!)

    • koreansouthpaw – I’ve heard quite a bit about this form of texting – I think it’s called ‘jejemon’? One of my readers, thegirlbehindthepen, wrote this in her response….

      …”They use numbers to replace the original letters. But some only do add extra letters in the original context. The example that i’ll give you is what I think the worst of all.
      1. 3ow powhz- Elow po- “Hello po”
      2. Wuht 4r3 you doin’?- “What are you doing?”…”

      But this is the first I’m hearing about “camel caps”… because the ‘language’ needed to be a little MORE difficult to decipher? I’ll tell you what I told thegirlbehindthepen – I would set my cellphone on fire before I would EVER learn to text like that. 😉

      • Actually, using numbers as letters is what we call l337 speak (leet speak) or what we can refer to as elite speak, but it falls under different category than being a ‘jejemon’.

        Jejemon is derived from the word ‘jeje’, an alternative for ‘hehe’. You know that Philippines was invaded by Spanish colony and the latter left a lot of influence… including letter ‘J’ sound = letter ‘H’ sound (i.e. Jose read is Ho-seh). The suffix -mon was attached to the root word jeje to make it a noun.

        Jejemon(s), therefore, are people who prefer ‘stylish’ texts than ‘clean’ conversations. Jejemons alter a lot and is not limited to spelling only.

  70. I can relate to this post…I have an old piece-of-crap cell…am not replacing anytime soon…if I text I use full words and proper punctuation…really fighting to stay that way…Your post was funny and well-written. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    • millayt- Thanks so much for your congrats and your comments! I always stan in awe of people who can manage to stick to their resolve of using proper grammar when they aren’t using a phone with a keyboard. *If there was an applauding emoticon, I’d put it here*

  71. Hey! wonderful article, nicely articulated facts and grievances of text-ing. Lets hope for better days when there will be no need of writing text messages or perhaps auto translation / decoding of these acronyms by machine (mobile cell).

    • Muhammad – Thanks so much for your response. I would love to get a device that translates my voice into text. One of my readers said she had one on her phone (I forget what she called it) – sounded like a really cool feature to have. A close second would be an acronym app… would save me from having to run to Google all the time! 😀

    • Henry – Thanks for thinking enough of my post to reblog it on your site! I’ve never been reblogged before – exciting stuff.

      Are language purists allowed to curse… if so, I’m in! 🙂

  72. I’m one of those teenager people…or has been. Recently turned 20, so I guess I’m technically not a teen anymore. I’ve been using mobile phones for 8 years now, and at least for the last 5 of them (and most likely more, but may be some exceptions before that) I have always wrote everything in the right way. The only exceptions is when I’ve been texting with my girlfriend whenever she’s been on a holiday, because that costs quite a lot more (we both live in Norway, so it’s quite normal to go on vacation to other countries here). I will not back down and if I don’t get what someone else is saying, I tell them so. I’ve always been stubborn on this. No other shortcuts than the ones that are socially accepted in the English language (such as “I’m”, “I’ve” and other ‘ed words).

    So I do hope you will return to the…”bright side”, I guess we’ll call it. Oh, and by the way, I’ve always been searching for full keyboards to my mobile phones as well. Waiting for one to come to me by mail to attach to my iPhone which I bought by peer pressure, really. At the moment, I therefore use so long time to text, I do believe several people has stopped texting me as much as they used to…

    • Soniclizzz – Thanks for such a thoughtful response! I think it’s great that you stick to using proper grammar when you text, but I could see where it would get pretty costly if you are doing it long distance.

      I don’t know if I will be able to return to the “bright side” permanently, but I do make frequent trips back to visit 🙂

  73. Reblogged this on Sonic Lizzz and commented:
    I sort of stumbled upon this when I was visiting WordPress today and I think it’s quite the informative post, so I thought I’d try to “reblog” it. Never tried before, so I’m not sure how it looks, but do read through this thing.

  74. Love your post. I just wrote one about punctuation when another blog I read triggered some thoughts about the changing English language and our need to respond as writers and communicators. What a fascinating subject this is!

    • writelindy – Thanks so much! I will try to check out your post on punctuation when some of my blog traffic dies down and I can once again sit down for a leisurely read 🙂

      I think the subject of language and social media is an interesting one. But I had NO idea the number of people out there who hated text speak as much as me. Total eye opener. Although given the fact that most people on wordpress are writers, I guess I shouldn’t have been so surprised.

  75. Full typing with one hand!
    I also do not like text-speak, and will take the extra time to type out whole words. I just came across something called “FrogPad”. http://www.frogpad.com. It allows you to type real words, with speed, using only one hand (left or right). They have a solution for regular keyboards, Apple TrackPad, iPad App, and other systems. I can see it being useful for people with carpal tunnel, tendonitis, and mobility issues. Might also useful for college note taking. I’m tempted to try it.

    • shoelady – Thanks for your response! The frogpad looks like an interesting gadget. I’ll have to work my way up to an iPhone before I make another leap to the frogpad (get it? LEAP? hahaha) 🙂

    • Victoria – Thanks for responding! I use LOL, or when something really tickles me, I’ll use ROFL. Other than that, I tend to keep the acronyms to a bare minimum.

      So pick that head of yours up… no blame, no shame 🙂

  76. Firstly, congratulations on being Freshly Pressed.

    I still use proper words in my texts and can’t get used to the shortened terms. It seems that each day someone comes up with a different acronym. When I got used to lol being laugh out loud someone text me and ended it with lol, but I was confused as the text wasn’t remotely funny. I discovered later they meant lots of love. My texts go on, often into a second text (Think it’s the writer in me that wants to complete the picture) but I get two word replies which take me longer to decipher than a novel would. I still, though, have concerns about the death of the written and the spoken word.
    Long may us old time conversationialists remain !!

    • Steve – Thanks so much for your congrats and your thoughtful response! Up until this blog post, I had never heard of LOL being used for anything besides “laugh out loud” – the “lots of love” is new for me.

      Keep writing those text-books!! 🙂

  77. “heyyyyyyyyy” – stretching the word adds emphasis. Misspelling can be used to convey excitement… Not to sure why… but it does. “kk” – not really sure why people use this, a simple ‘k’ would be enough, may as well type ‘ok’ if you’re going to add another (and pointless) k…?
    But as a high school senior, I personally hate texting shorthand/abbreviations. Besides, once you get used to texting, spelling out the whole word doesn’t take much longer. I suppose it all depends on your proficiency in spelling as well…

    I’m not too sure where the heck I’m going with this comment… So I’ll just stop here. 🙂
    -Atlas.

    • Atlas – I appreciate a good ramble as much as the next person, so I enjoyed your post… even if you didn’t know where it was headed 😉

      Thanks for clarifying the other possible uses for misspelling – with all the different reasons behind it, it’s a wonder more people don’t misinterpret what’s being written. Thank god for emoticons to make everything a little clearer 😀

  78. lol. i like this post. i think this is everyone’s problem. nowadays, everyone couldnt get far away from their cellphone. texting is being a dreadful habit. even for myself, i can texting on my cellphone even without looking on it xD

    • Erieen – Thanks for responding! My daughter can also text with her eyes closed… I think that might be a skill of the 25 and under set. I’ve never seen someone who was middle-aged texting with their eyes closed 😀

      I think texting only becomes a “dreadful” habit if you are doing it while someone is trying to have a face-to-face conversation with you. Other than that, I think it’s fine in reasonable amounts.

  79. Don’t have children but I truly can relate to this. I just think it makes you dumber. I still used complete grammar and punctuation on all my text. Cool blog and congratulations on being Freshly Pressed! Will follow..

    • Jenny – Thanks so much for your congrats and your comments. And I’m happy to add you to my list of followers… I’ve gone from 12 to nearly 200 in the past two days!! YAY!! It’s like a dream come true for me 😀

      • Congrats once again..Great article..I will still use complete grammar and punctuation forever and ever. Do not care if it will take longer as long as it does not make me dumb. Happy blessed weekend to you…………

  80. Good post. I can relate. I am a high school teacher and my red pen never gets a break from circling the text-language ‘i’, ‘u’, ‘me2’, and — believe it or not — the smiley face 🙂 (yes, in a formal writing piece for high school!), and the infamous ‘LOL’.

    And I , too, stubbornly refuse to give in and use the shorthand text-language — I’m actually coping quite well with my full length words and proper grammar and punctuation. I guess I have BlackBerry to thank for that, having a mini keybaord on your phone does make it so much easier to type in proper English and still type fast — I can probably type with “unnatural speed and agility” that would rival your daughter 😉

    And all the best with getting that book deal… or with getting that book finished 🙂

    • Ruqaiyah – Thanks for posting (again!) 🙂 Now we have two things in common – big boobs and a love for the English language… it’s like we’re twins!

      I give you and all of the teachers I’ve met on here (from this post) major props for dealing with kids who can’t write a coherent sentence. You have WAY more patience than I do. I’m afraid that I wouldn’t be a very effective teacher… I’d be too busy ripping the hair out of my head to get any teaching done.

      • Lol. Sometimes, all I can do is sit and stare in wonderment (not the good kind) at the work students present before me–and fight like crazy against the urge to scream out the grammar rules to them that I have already repeated several times! So… not sure I quite deserve those props. Lol.

  81. Great post, and funny too! I like the bit about two English speaking people needing a translator!

    The great thing about the iPhone being so popular is that it takes away some of the text speak because the predictive text bit is so good. I actually find it easier and quicker to type a text properly on the iPhone than to try and use all the Acronyms, but then, perhaps that’s just down to my age!

    • Poker – Thanks so much for your response. So glad you enjoyed my blog. The picture I took at the end was kind of a last minute add in – glad I did it because I think that had something to do with me being picked for “Freshly Pressed”.

      I hope you come back to read my blog next week! 🙂

  82. I’m a 16-year-old with unlimited texts who uses complete punctuation and capital letters and tries her best to use grammar too (though STILL baffled on practice/practise). When I first got a phone, though, I did use the acronyms. Predictive text cured me of that. Now my parents use more of them than me and it makes me laugh every time.

    • Miriam – Thanks so much for taking the time to post your comments. I’m amazed by the age range of the people responding – teenagers (you might be the youngest I’ve seen so far) right on up to senior citizens. Very cool to hear all the different perspectives on the subject.

      My daughter makes fun of me for trying to use text speak too… parents are kind of dammed if they do, damned if they don’t, I guess. But the next time your mom uses text speak, just think how much she must love you to write so incoherently 🙂

      • Yes, there’s a wide range of people on the internet! I still get amazed every time someone over the age of twenty comments on my blog, since the readers are primarily teenagers, ha ha 🙂
        Back when I was a slightly chavvy eleven year old with my first phone, I’d use text speak and try and persuade my parents too. Now I’ve gone predictive text way I can’t do it at all. I make fun of them for saying ‘u’, ha ha. 😀

  83. hilarious… glad you had the presence of mind to look up the term, instead of texting back a “???” type text. When I was away at university, my mom and I mostly talked through msn messenger (i don’t even have it on my computer anymore… weird), and, while we mostly avoided the short forms, I did use them sometimes. I had to leave my computer for whatever reason, so I wrote, “BRB” and left for a good half hour or so. I came back to find that my mom had left me a good 20 messages that went from “What?” to “Hello? are you there? what does that mean? are you ok?! Answer me!” She could have saved her rep by googling it 😉
    Congrats on FP!

    • lexy – Thanks so much for sharing your story – it cracked me up!! I could totally see that happening with me and my daughter (if Google wasn’t around to save me).

      But I think no matter how hard parents try to bridge the generational divide with their kids, we’re bound to fall in the gap every now and then. All that matters is that we keep trying to climb back out 🙂

  84. Haha… I love the post! I am guilty of shortening my messages to text message format, but when it comes to legal papers and formal reports, I always use the correct grammar, syntax, and proper punctuations. I know. If my speech teacher is going to see me writting in text form, she’ll skin the hide off of me.

    • Angel – Thanks so much for your comments. So glad you liked my blog.

      It’s good that you can distinguish between your text messages and your professional work – that puts you ahead of the game with most teens and twenty-somethings. Sounds to me like your speech teacher did a good job with you 🙂

  85. Great post! I’m 26 years old and have been texting since high school. When I first started, I substituted “u” for “you” and used “lol” “ttyl” “btw” but those were also terms used on AOL & the Instant Messanger (the *real* beginning to the downfall of written communication). Anywho, one day I just decided I hated how it looked and made me sound. (My family and some friends affectionately call me the grammar police). I’m a fast typer so I can still manage to send a text back with spelled out words in a short amount of time. I don’t always use capital letters (though the phone automatically adds those when it’s the beginning of a new sentence) but I NEVER use numbers in the middle of words (e.g. “2day”). The good think about auto-correct is that, as long as it’s turned on, it will fix any spelling or give you options of words to choose from…so maybe, slowly, properly spelled words will make their way back into texts? (But I’m not holding my breath).

    Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!!

  86. Nothing changes a child’s mind like a good “rent rant,” or rant from the parents. Whatever you do, don’t send texts like “okay.”

    You’ll sound pissed off. It’s like when people pronounce the t on the end of what. kk ttyl lylafpb (love ya like a freshly pressed blogger)

    • edrevets – Thanks for all the freshly pressed love!

      I’m good at ranting… my daughter is even better at ignoring me when I rant 🙂 I know only about 10% of what I say when I’m in rant mode gets absorbed, the rest provides her with material to laugh at with her friends when I leave the room.

  87. All I can really say to this is…HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. This was one hilarious post! Sad, but true though, human interaction has become a lot more shallow and will probably continue to become shallower with the passage of time and the advancement of technology.

  88. I totally get what you’re saying. It drives me insane when my niece misspells texts and fb posts with words like “okk” and “skewl”. However, the more I’ve texted, the more I have to remember not to type “u” in a work email myself!

    P.S. My 8-year-old son’s spelling is so poor I have forbidden him to text outside the family or use fb until he can write well enough not to make himself look like a fool!

    Congrats on being freshly pressed!

    • Melissa – Thanks so much for your congrats and your comments!

      Wow, you already have a text savvy 8-year old? My son is the same age, and wanted to see what all the text hype was about, so we got him a “text now” app for his iPod Touch. He used it for a couple of days, but once the novelty wore off, he was back to using the iPod to play Angry Birds 🙂 Glad I didn’t get him a cellphone!

  89. My father is one of those text book people.

    Dear Daughter,

    How are you? I’m fine? My phone is close to dying, and I hope this text will send before it does! etc. etc.

    Love, Dad

    It makes me love him more.

    • L.A. – Aw, that’s sweet. I hope my daughter feels the same about my text-books, and that she’s not just giggling about them with her friends. “Hey, check out this text my mom sent me! Think it’s LOOOOOONNNNGGGG enough?” 🙂

  90. HAHAHAHAH, Great article! 😀 I started to dislike people who use SMS language. It’s very annoying and doesn’t make sense at times. 😐 One day, one of my friend texted me, I took me around 5 minutes to decipher the meaning of text; the word involved the numbers too. I don’t know why they are doing it. It’s just utterly sordid thing to do. Even people started using the same short SMS language in papers. It was fun to read you stories ! (:

    Cheers,
    Aadil

  91. funny post.. my kids are always good references if i can’t understand the text… texting is here to stay and no choice but to join in the bandwagon.. by the way, thanks for the link on acronym dictionary..

    • Starlight – Thanks for your comments. Glad you enjoyed my blog. I will use my daughter to decode some of the texts I get from other people using SMS language sometimes. But more times than not, she’s the one sending them… and that’s why there’s Google 🙂

  92. Hilarious post. In India I think the sms fad is on the wane. It has resulted because of the amazing dip in calling charges. Specially with the per second billing scheme, shorter calls are far more easy to make than typing a sms and sending it. Just realised the dip in the frequency of the sms that I receive now!

    • Personal Concerns – Thanks so much for taking the time to respond.

      That’s an interesting turn of events in the use of SMS texting in your country. That hasn’t hit the US yet. We have an unlimited texting plan, so if my daughter sends 10 texts or 10,000, it costs us the same amount every month. I can’t even imagine being charged per text… I’d be in the poor house 😉

  93. It is one helluva great post. It is a fact that today’s youngsters do not know the typical and beautiful way of writing English and they will never understand this fact. SMS txting means the world to them, but for us who cherish the way English is written and spoken; we take pride in the way we do it.

    Thanks for this post. Elegantly written, and really funny. Mwaaaaah for this great writing.

    • Abhilash – Thanks so much for your sweet comments 🙂 I’m so glad you enjoyed my blog.

      I agree that there is a level of appreciation for the written word that most textaholics don’t share. But I don’t think it’s a generational thing, I think it’s a writer thing. We savor every well crafted sentence, and derive pleasure when we are able to find just the write words to express our sentiments. But texting is about speed – quantity, not quality. If I labored over my texts like I do my blog, I’d never be able to put my phone down! 🙂

  94. Hello and congratulations on being Freshly Pressed! I am very glad you were, or else I would probably not have stumbled across your blog. As a teenager with high-speed texting abilities, I am very proud to announce to the world that not once have I given in to peer pressure and used text-speak. In fact, not only do I send essay-length texts (if you read my posts, it will give you a good idea of what I mean!), but if I spot an error of any kind, I will send a second text to apologise… in as-perfect-as-possible English.

    I look forward to reading more from you – it seems like our individual wavelengths aren’t that far apart!

    • J.C. – Thanks so much for your congrats and your comments.

      I’m glad I was Freshly Pressed too! Before this past week, I was getting less than 150 views during the course of an entire week… so chances of anyone outside of my friends and family circle finding me were slim to none. But after getting Freshly Pressed, it was like the ceiling blew off the top of my blog and allowed it to soar into numbers I never would have imagined. I’m so, so thankful.

      Also thankful to find people, like you, to talk and swap stories with – it’s been a lot of fun. I’m glad there are still a handful of people in your age group who are passionate about this colorful, and complicated language of ours. So keep sending out your text-books! 🙂

      • I will do! You definitely deserved to be discovered (so to speak… erm… type), so I’m very glad your writing’s getting the recognition it deserves… and you may well be much closer to a book deal now, methinks!

  95. Congratulations, Freshly Pressed Sis! This is quite an accomplishment – very cool!

    And to think, I knew you before you were famous…

    • Hey, Bro!! Here’s a familiar face among the crowd of strangers 🙂

      Getting to your post was a goal of mine for the last day or so – if I got here, I knew I was almost done responding to everyone’s feedback (well, not really done… I think there are 50 or so more after you. But it’s better than the over 200 that I started with!). I have done little else the last two days, but I think it’s important to show my appreciation to people who take the time to stop by and let me know how they liked my blog.

      Don’t worry, I won’t forget the little people when I become famous… I’m going to need someone to drive me around in my limo 🙂

      • Holy moly – you actually responded to every comment ?!?!?!
        THAT is dedication to the cause (or an indicator of insanity)…

  96. Excellent post, funny and opinionated. I text with proper punctuation and apostrophe’d conjunctions. I got used to it. I feel like capitol letters and good spelling are important in any setting, and I practiced with texting until I could burn plastic.

    The point of the added letters is a good one, and I use the mysterious texting language every day. It’s my exception to the grammar/spelling rules I set, and I can’t even try to justify it. It’s just more fun to mess with the speech. I don’t only mean “kk” and “heyyyy”, either. The lingo has evolved in a twisted way, and while I see your point about the bastardization of the language, I take great pleasure in creating my own little version, complete with caps and punctuation.

    Again, great post. I definitely lol’d more than once.
    -SKV

    • SeaKing – Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such a thoughtful response. I definitely have my moments of creating my own versions of words for fun – texting is the one place you can get away with it and not have someone think you have the spelling/writing capabilities of a two-year old 🙂

      Glad I gave you a reason to laugh. Hope to see you back here again (new entries often come out on Monday or Tuesday morning).

  97. I have an aunt who continuously rants about how cell phones and text messages are contributing to the downfall of human civilization. Here’s a surprise, she’s a writer. Here’s a few more surprises: She can’t figure out why her 20-something year old nieces (my cousins) don’t want to call her land line telephone and have a 90 minute conversation every other day. They would text her all day long, about every detail of their young and exciting lives, except she is determined to not allow the evils of texting into her world of complete sentences. She also can’t seem to figure out why the rest of the family gets irritated with her when she chronically shows up late to family functions because she has either gotten lost or because her car ran out of gas and she had no means to call for directions or for a tow truck. Apparently driving aimlessly around town for an extra 45 minutes is preferable to using a cell phone.

    I see both sides of the coin, and I too have no tolerance for poor grammar and illiterate writing, but I think if the older generation wants to keep track of the younger generation, it would be wise to learn to speak their language.

    • The devil you know – Thanks for your thoughtful response. You make a very good point. I think it is important for older generations to try and meet the younger ones on common ground. It keeps the communication lines open, and the moms/grandparents/aunts/etc. are more likely to find out what’s happening in the kid’s life.

      I think it’s a little harder for the older generations to remain flexible… might be due to their brittle bones 😉

      P.S. – On the flip-side of your cellphone-hating aunt, I’ve got a 94-year old aunt who joined up with facebook, has a cellphone, and emails me regularly. I hope I end up like her in fifty years – young at heart 🙂

  98. Great post, made me laugh a lot! I never had a problem using short hand text speak because when I first got a cell phone, you could only send one text (100 letters, including spaces) at a time to anyone with a different cell provider. So to avoid having to send someone 4 different texts messages for one response I adapted to short hand quickly! What’s really funny to me, is that my step-mom speed types way faster than me and uses abbreviations that I have never seen anyone use before. I am always having to ask her what she means or look things up. 🙂

    • Kitty – Thanks for stopping by and leaving your response! I’m glad I gave you a reason to laugh 🙂

      Isn’t it funny when you see the older generation grasp hold of new technologies better than you do? I’ve got a 94-year old aunt who regularly makes me feel like an outdated dinosaur by comparison. Which I have to say, I love. 🙂

    • Naeem – LOL, I think you’re right! Maybe a few generations from now, people will be born with smaller thumbs, better suited for the tiny texting keyboard, and necks that are naturally angled downward. I hope I’m gone long before that… I don’t want to see my great-great mutant grandchildren texting before they can talk 😉

  99. Thanks for this very interesting, very timely post.

    Mobile phone technology has revolutionized communication and made the world “borderless”.
    We, of the “old school” relatively find it harder to adapt to SMS than the younger generation who definitely are more ‘techies’ than us. In our country, we call this manner of texting, “jejemon”. This phenomenon has not only changed grammar and spelling but has introduced a new culture. I know of a writer/ lecturer/ franchisor who had to study and use “jejemon” English in order to get the young professionals (“yuppies”) to read his books and patronize his products and services.

    I do not use “jejemon” when I text. I use the T9 or the ‘dictionary/ spelling’ feature of the mobile phone to write text messages in correct grammar and spelling. In that way, I do my share to preserve the “old school”…

    • Chito – Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to my blog.

      I’ve heard a lot about ‘jejemon’ from some of my other readers. Very interesting, but I think I would be more likely to set my cellphone on fire than EVER try to understand or use that language. Someone on here gave me an example of a sentence written in ‘jejemon’ – I don’t know how anyone understands it!

  100. I loved this post. The funnest post on the freshly-pressed page in 3 days. Yes, THAT GOOD.

    I usually use proper English in texts, and feel a pang of guilt anytime I have to use “TTYL” or “U” because I’m in a hurry.

    Grammar Nazi till I die.

    Again, gr8 post!

    • tx27 – Thanks so much for you response. That’s some seriously high praise, and it might take a few days for my ego to deflate back to its original size. I usually post a new entry every Monday or Tuesday, so check back in and hopefully I’ll give you another reason to laugh 🙂

      Grammar nazis unite!!

  101. “As the month wore on, I could feel my resolve starting to weaken; slowly acronyms and numerical inserts began to rear their ugly heads. Meghan forced me to end my war on text speak, and brought me over to the dark side – the land where spelling and grammar go to die. I rationalized that it was better to raise the white flag and surrender, than to have both my thumbs fall off.” This is how it all begins. . .the wearing down. . .the acceptance of spelling “all right” as “alright”. . .the insidious, but insistent creep and blurring of boundaries. . .congrats on FP.

  102. Just as I was reading your post, I was contemplating one of my own on a similar topic. I’m wickedly frustrated (NO hyphen with an adverb used as an adjective!!) at the state of writing and grammar. Texting and bloggers (okay, I have two myself…) lead the way, but it’s (not its) spilling over to professional journalists. Newspapers are axing editors and copy editors, and stories are thrown up willy nilly, without regard to proofreading for typos and proper grammar. I’ve taken to leaving corrections in the comments section.
    I’m thinking along the line of: “Have it your way! Its for it’s (and vice versa, since no cares to learn the correct use), your for you’re, which vs. that — who cares?”
    But, I do care! And it makes nuts!
    I love your humor, but it’s also a sad commentary on the written word.

  103. I LOVE the last pic! Found this really interesting after reading several reports that kids actually use this text language in exams these days! Also on a humorous note – do you know you can get arthritis in your thumbs from too much texting and/or video games? They are treating some cases in Japan!

  104. I do not look forward to this when my kids get to that age. I still have a flip phone, no texting, and I can’t stand the acronyms either. I hope I never catch them using acronyms in their schoolwork! Everything you said was right on. Excellent post! Congrats on being FP!

  105. You are doing pretty well. Just learnt quite recently that OMG was Oh my Gosh or something like that and LOL was laugh out loud. I never in my wildest imagination ever thought I would use such “fake/’ words but now I am the expert. Great Blog and congrats for being freshly pressed.

  106. hahaha I laughed at cellasaurus! I find texting a little annoying because sometimes a call is quicker to tell someone something important and it’s just a better way to keep up with people, but everyone just insists on texting these days..
    I didn’t know what DTB meant, thanks for that! haha

  107. Just like you I stubbornly dig my heels in and refuse to speak in unsophisticated “text-talk”. I am constantly teased about doing it too so I feel empathy for your dedication in using proper punctuation and spelling. People call us crazy, but we shall be the ones to preserve the English language! Sorry…*smooths hair and adjusts jacket*.

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  109. Love this! As a former English teacher, I had my reservations at first. As I mom, however, I was sold pretty quickly. My daughter and I held conversations throughout ball games and other high school events through text messages. I kept a respectable distance and no one had to know she was talking to her mom!

  110. Well I can’t say that it’s definitely not the true reality, because it is! We have good & bad things today with Technology. I prefere to focus on the positive because here in Atlanta last year, a teenager was home alone & someone broke in her house. She hid in the closet & texted her neighbor to call 911. Thankfully, they arrived in time & caught the perpetrator.

    Yes, you are right though, some kids need to chill with these things. m.02

  111. I knew someone who luckily checked an official letter a ‘young’ work mate was intending to send out…….txtspk, slang, you name it the letter had it and when spoken to about it could not see what was wrong with it!

  112. I love this! Back in grade 9, we taught our grammar-nazi-but-awesome English teacher, then aged 62, how to text. She also initially insisted on correct English, but by now her text-speak is so advanced that I struggle to understand her.

    To be honest, I actually still punctuate all my texts…

    I love this part: “Probably would have been quicker to communicate via homing pigeon”

  113. Funny my 20 and 30 something friends use real words and often punctuation when they text me. It’s my lawyer 50’s something friend who takes short cuts and and Aunt in her 70’s that uses sms in her emails that drive me crazy!

  114. As both a college student and a journalist, I find myself caught in the crosshairs. Do I abide by the rules of my generation and text using abbrevs? Or do I stay true to my passion and craft, looking up spelling or AP Style before sending a text? I chose the latter, and I’ve never regretted it. Why? Because I hate receiving “k, il tlk 2 u ltr ^_^” texts from my roommate. Again…why? Because texts like that make my incredibly intelligent roommate seem like a total dipwad. And I don’t ever want someone to read a text from me and think, “She’s a journalism major???” So I’ll stick with my complete sentences, thank you. And I’m so quick with my QWERTY keypad that it doesn’t really matter anyway. 🙂 Thanks for the fun read!

  115. As a grandparent, I text because it is the best way to communicate with my GK’s. I spell everything out using a phone keyboard on an old Razr. When I text my teen grand daughters, I get a return answer within seconds. It takes longer to dial a phone and have them answer it than it takes to send a message and get an answer.
    A new version of the English language is evolving right before our eyes. Imagine what the future holds; Kindle books with text speak.

  116. Ok, as a mother of an 11 year old daughter, I TOTALLY appreciate your post. My daughter laughs at me, regularly, for my “antiquated” spelling, grammar, and slow texting speed. However, she also rolls her eyes and laughs at me when I use “textspeak”. So I can’t win with the ever so clever pubescent age girl. But then I cut her some slack because I remember when I used words like “radical” and “dude” and “gnarly”. That was my generation defining and owning language for themselves. Textspeak is this next generation’s trip. My mom and dad managed to find a way to consistently communicate with me, I’m sure we will continue to find a way to get through our kids!

  117. I really enjoyed your article. After holding out for a long time, I just traded my flip phone for a Droid and began texting. I have a twelve-year-old daughter and can relate to your post. I also taught sixth grade language arts for years. That was before the texting monster attacked and took hold of our youth’s writing. My daughter says that I am the world’s slowest texter. I, too, type it out as if I were writing a paper. Thank you for sharing.

  118. I like texting because then you don’t have to go through the filler chat, you can just get to the point. When it ends up getting lengthy and going back and forth it’s time to accept it should be a phone call. Nice post : )

  119. The graphic on the volume of “Hey” was probably the second funniest thing I’ve seen here in WordPress all week.

    Personally, I made a direct, abrupt transition from stone-age Motorola cellphone to a Samsung Galaxy smartphone. I have to admit I can’t go anywhere without the damned thing now, particularly because it comes with a QWERTY keyboard! This way I’ve never resorted to that butchered speech you refer to in your entire article. Heck. I’ve even written comments in people’s blogs with the thing.

  120. I couldn’t stop laughing it was lmao funny. My husband kept asking what was so amuzing. I am part of the texting generation and I don’t even get half of the acronyms. I do feel that texting is killing human interaction, but hey if you want to “speak” to someone you just call. However it doesn’t help if the other person wont answer the phone but will answer your text.:-)

  121. I’m a stickler for proper grammar (ex-English major turned Psychology turned medical student… in full confidence, Chaucer and 13th century literature scared the pants off me)!
    All my colleagues hate me.

  122. It used to be like that with me and my friends, I admit it, but one day I suddenly realized how I was writing and felt embarrassed of myself. I mean, we spend years learning grammar and spelling for it to be forgotten in 5 minutes?

    I really liked your post and it made me realize I am proud of myself for texting as I do, with correct grammar, spelling and punctuation. (:

    Vic

  123. Why is this popular under humor? Its more like a dairy entry with the slightly humorous google image search results for texting thrown in between paragraphs.

  124. As a teenager trying to become a writer, I can relate to this. I’m a bit of a grammar Nazi and we often peer edit essays, and I’m notorious for leaving hundreds of comments; and when my friends or classmates hear that I don’t have a phone, their first reaction is: “How do you live?”
    While I consider text speak to be the bane of my existence, I catch myself using it quite often since it’s easier to get a point across when you speak the same language as everyone else. Even if that language has been severed at the knees.

    Anyways, sorry if that was rant-y; I quite enjoyed your post, and especially enjoyed the image of a mom trying to keep up with her daughter and running into all sorts of venders at the mall. xD

  125. I like this post. I can relate to it. I didn’t even know my old Tracfone had a text feature until a friend showed it to me. I sent one text to see if it worked and haven’t sent another. It was too difficult. Oh, well. I’m too long-winded, anyway!

  126. I’m one of those who stubbornly refused to use shortforms and poor grammar on texts, and constantly laughed at by my friends. Thankfully I have been texting for the past 15 years or so and hence am fast enough to keep up despite my stubbornness, though whether I will get repetitive stress injury as a result is another matter.

  127. I have to admit, my friends are always wondering why I still have a phone with buttons, haha!
    Texting is one of those things, I have to admit, you have to be with, or not be with.
    I’m always correcting my friends online, admittedly. Haha!

  128. phones take the thumbs and the computer take the fingers, its terrible of technology to screw our hands in such wild manner. I think touch is better or using a stylus or pen to do things, but there take the spirit of texting away…..

  129. Love this!! I have refused to speak “text-speak” and continue to use full words and punctuation. I have to hold myself back from going off on my friends when they butcher grammar in their messages to me.

  130. Reblogged this on homesalesseattle and commented:
    This reminds me of any interaction with young persons. Once the eyes roll up and they keep semi-lifting their phones it’s a pretty good indication that conversation left the station a long time ago. The worst thing is it reminds me of myself just 40 or 50 years ago thinking what the old fart going bla, bla bla. I really hate that link used on me since it was right on then and so it is now.

  131. I agree! Being a 17 year old, I find the SMS language to be extremely annoying, and have always refrained myself from using it. Till date, I’m proud to say that I captalise my I’s and names, i comes before e except after c, and the only acronym I use is BRB, that too if I’m in a hurry. 🙂
    Check out blog btw! 🙂
    sunshineandcyanide,wordpress.com

  132. Awesome post! I entered the wonderful world of text approximately five years ago when my children stopped answering my phone calls. I also got made fun of for my grammatically correct and properly puncuated text messages. I still don’t know all the textease. Just the other day I had to ask what SMH meant. My son informed and said “Shaking My Head.” Then laughed and said, “Mom’s SMHing about SMH!”

  133. This is just hilarious! I’ve never laughed so hard in my entire life, yet felt such empathy about someone else’s problem. I think although not long ago I used to be a teengaer, I never used acronyms – well, just the most common ones, like lol and stuff – So, it was a little bit hard for me to write a text. Actually, it is still a bit hard.
    Anyway, this post is defintely one of my favourite ones.

    ROFLMAO 🙂 kidding

  134. What sucks is when texting is the only option, for example, my fiancee and I live in different countries. Texting using our iPhones is the only way we can communicate throughout the day without going crazy. But yes, I agree, begrudgingly, with your article.

  135. I had a Pantech, then got my iPhone last year. It is with me always. I text. But, I refuse to text talk with my children. I write it out and I don’t respond to them unless they write it out. I’m a stickler with that. I get the whole text talk, it’s like slang. Okay to use it so long as you can be in a different situation and not use it. And with the kids sometimes they need to call a friend to get, say, directions to a house, or find out what time an event starts and they will text and wait for a response and I say, no, this is when you call. I need the give and take NOW! I find that the kids aren’t learning how to make a simple call to ask a simple question so I have to force it. Ugh. But otherwise, I text. It has worked really well with me since I have a strained relationship with my Ex-husband. That’s how we communicate and it’s all good with me.

  136. The thing that annoys me the most is when people say lol… if you’re speaking face to face, why not just laugh?

  137. Despite being 23 and having been a textaholic since I was given my first phone seven years ago, I refuse to bastardize the English language (bar the word ‘textaholic’!). Couple that with my complete inability to be succinct, and I end up sending numerous ‘essays’ each day – my friends don’t think they even count as ‘texts’ any more. Instead of replying (it’d take too long, apparently), they grade me as if it were an English assignment. And I am embarrassed to admit I am thrilled whenever I receive an A!

  138. I feel you. I, too, have been writing texts in the King’s English since I first got the ole’ cell phone…no matter that MY MOTHER is down with all the slang when she texts me. And the brain aneurism thing…YES.

  139. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d without a doubt donate to this brilliant blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to new updates and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group. Talk soon!

  140. I have three teenagers who love cell-phone email (SMS isn’t so popular here).
    We live in Japan, young people use email abbreviations and emoticons here too…but they’re totally different from those used in English.

    For example, (笑) = “LOL”.

    Anyways, your blog is great! Please check mine: ( http://tokyo5.wordpress.com )

  141. Still on my soapbox, have never sent a single cell phone text. Don’t even know how. In fact, hardly use my cellphone. I’m not even sure where it is right now! Then again, my son is only 1 so I’m not feeling any pressure from that front.

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