July 20, 2005

Oxford Rewritten ??

July 20, 2005 Posted by Vijay 1 comment
Seems it won't be long before Oxford dictionary gets rewritten , so as to facilitate the previous generation of people(say in their 30's 40's) to understand the English language that today's "Generationext" converse in. Advent of SMS, possession of mobiles, penetration of electronic media which cuts across sections of society, has left the English language in a critical stage. Not that it has lost it's charm. But, english usage has become more sms-centric or chat-centric. That is why you will find sentences like " dis is d best ", which for english pundits is pretty much indiscernible. Fortunately, I have become used to it, and can identify the sentence appropriately as - "This is the best".

The human element, of opportunism in a more suttle form has evolved. When distances have been bridged by means of mails and chats, humans want to use it to the maximum benefit and faster too. So, it is far easier and faster to type a "d" than to type "the".Similar is the case with "this" which has got transformed into "dis". Benefits ? You save 10 mins(Notice, even I have been infected with the lingo .. mins ??!!) of time, while paying the charge for just 60 minutes while browsing at an internet cafe.Similarly , mobile phones have had a more serious impact. The cost factor is so much more pervasive here. SMS'ing is the in-thing, though MMS'ing will give some respite to the English language.So, you need to keep check on how much currency you have in your mobile, because your parents will not give another 350 bucks for recharging, atleast not for another 3 weeks ! So now, "I am" becomes "m" , "getting" becomes "getin" , "never" becomes "neva", "been" becomes "bn" .. and the list is endless. And when even a 10 year old has the affluence to get a decent mobile, it becomes difficult to stop this lingo from spreading more.

Just imagine, if the english dictionaries were to be updated with the sms lingos. There won't be anymore "we", there will only be a "v". There will not be anymore "what", there will only be a "wat". There won't be a "your" anymore, only a "ur", nor a "you", just a "u". So , essentially, there will not be dictionary anymore. It will just be the 26 alphabets in the dictionary.

For me, it's irritating to read "dis" and "dat". It takes so much more time to figure out what the person wants to say. And by the time you do figure out the words, the whole essence of the message is completely lost. On a positive note, it does help those studious guys and gals to take down more notes in the classroom. But if this has an effect on the exam papers, the teachers are going to have a torrid time of it.

As far as I am concerned, I do try to write whole words.But it is difficult to avoid the usage of "u" and "ur" and "abt". It sure is. But then, such is the influence !


Nettie said...

I guess the trick is to know when to use proper English, eventhough the abbreviations are much easier.