Jul 222011

Disturbing is the idea, to me anyway, that Internet lingo is creating our new dictionaries as “words” like LOL do not have an official place amongst words established years ago by scholars and which are not abbreviations. Am I wrong in thinking this?

How are people supposed to create a story, read a book, or qualify as educated if the lingo they create on their own is popularized and then made into a new language we classify as English? With literacy rates on such a decline throughout North America why bother rewarding the creation of such terms when so many actual words go ignored or, in a lot of cases, completely unnoticed? I feel instead we should be concentrating on teaching the words that already exist.

The other day a neighbour’s child set up a table at the end of their driveway with what I thought was an effort to sell lemonade. Although I had many personal issues with this attempt nothing irked me more than seeing the huge sign posted with and advertisement for lomenade. Although spell check would have caught this on a computer it goes to show what this school aged child and her parents are missing in ways of education. Mistakes happen, I’m not perfect nor do I want to be. I am a writer, not an editor and admit to making many spelling mistakes in my day but this was so sad to me.

Sadder still is that people are shortening even for letter works like baby to be bb, year is written is yr, by the way is now btw. I used to love watching kids perform in a spelling bee, for hours they would rattle through words I was excited to learn but I wonder how long this will last. With the age of the Internet and it’s short form of everything making it’s way into the official English language, I wonder if we’ll just be watching clips on YouTube or Facebook in the future.

Let’s embrace the English language as it was before character limits were a factor and read so we know how to spell and what we’re selling.

Thanks for reading this,

Sarah Butland

  2 Responses to “Let Spelling Be”

  1. I so agree with you, Sarah. We cannot allow this rich, wonderful language to devolve, dumb down, bastardize itself and eventually become nothing more than a series of monosyllabic grunts.

  2. I do agree with you Sarah – I always cringe when I see spelling errors (and I admit that I make some of my own – especially when I am typing on my Blog). I know I should first type it in a word document, do a spell check and then paste it on the Blog, but sometimes I get lazy 🙂 – well not sometimes – but most times.
    Grammar is also a huge problem for me. I can blame it on my first language being English, but that is not true. I just need for someone to point it out to me (and am always thankful when someone does).
    For example, the use of its and it’s – it gets me all the time – it’s is used when it stands for ‘it is’ – its is the possessive…. (you might want to check your 2nd to last paragraph 🙂 In any case, as Stephen King says ‘As long as we do our best’. That small child who made a mistake can be forgiven – and I applaud her entrepreneur spirit!!

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