evolving language

A Dying Language

hello everyone,
I chose this picture to represent the changing nature of language. I remember taking a middle english course back in undergrad and was really intrigued by the changes that have occurred in language over time, such as with the great vowel shift, for example. I was reminded of this while I was listening to the podcast, and particularly when the speakers were discussing questions about the use of emoticons (did they discuss emoticons? or am I just wishing they did?) and abbreviations in text and email. They predicted that these terms will die out with email because we don’t need to use them verbally, and they are more a function of our need to preserve valuable real state in our writing (i.e. microblogging). I tend to agree about some terms (text lingo). After all, why would we feel the need to say “lol”, when we indicate our amusement by actually laughing. On the other hand, some abbreviations or changes in spelling may stick. (Who knows.) The whole thing kind of fascinates me.
Another interesting piece of that audio clip was about how technology is changing our attention span. It was even a little bit of a challenge for me to sit and listen for 60 min, but I did it and I do think it was worth listening to in one sitting. (but this is counter to the idea of “chunking” too, isn’t it?)
So those are some of my ideas and thoughts. I am totally looking forward this course and working with all of you.
ttyl ;o)

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9 Responses to evolving language

  1. fotopasion says:

    LOL…F2F is much btr. UR funny. ROFL.

  2. melburgess says:

    Nice to meet you! I like your chose picture – it represents how text is easy to misinterpret and reminds me of a couple stories. A family friend used to sign off her emails with “lol” because she thought it meant “lots of love”…which made her emails sometimes awkward?! As well, I was sent this picture from a student a few years ago of how text and symbols can cross over and lead to misinterpretation…. twisted, but still made me chuckle…

    • melburgess says:

      Oooops…I tried to leave an image in my reply, but copying the html didn’t work…here goes another try…

  3. kgill says:

    Great post! Your comments got me thinking about “lol.” My dad is originally from India and he always thought “lol” meant “lots of love.” I guess because that’s how they define “lol” in India. It’s interesting how the picture you selected showcases the various possibilities of abbreviations by referring to what we’re familiar with “lol” (laugh out loud) as “loss of language.” I wonder how each of these abbreviations vary from across cultures and regions.

  4. boon says:

    Hey thanks for your comments and stories of the different interpretations of acronyms! Great point about culturally specific they can. I am evening thinking of professions as an example of this insider language. I work in healthcare and boy, do we LOVE acronyms. I have mixed up a few!

  5. Lisa Nevoral says:

    Hey Stacy,

    Nice to see you in another MET course. I found this discussion interesting. As you have noted, some industries love acronyms and will actually say them instead of the words. I am a science teacher and we love to abbreviate. For example, elements on the periodic table can be said as either their symbol or their name. There are a lot of latin symbols that are used for units and such words such as therefore or example are usually written in their shortened versions.

    Here’s a story about lol that you might think is funny – my senior girls basketball team starting saying lol when they thought something was amusing or they were being sarcastic. I would here lol about 5 or 6 times in a practice.


  6. Stacey says:

    Hey Lisa,
    Good to see you again too. Interesting about the “LOL” -that must have been annoying! haha (not lol)
    The sciences and the periodic table. Yet one more example of how seem to be often trying to economize language…hmm

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