Have you ever sent a text without any abbreviations or emoticons? Many people think that abbreviations and emoticons mean that you cannot communicate in formal language or that you have a small vocabulary. I do not think this is true. I believe that texting can have both positive and negative effects on a person’s vocabulary. Texting can affect your ability to communicate in other forms, but it does not have to. If you are doing other things that improve your vocabulary like reading and writing other places, you will be fine.
If you only use text to communicate, you will likely have a negative effect on your vocabulary. Like the article, “Texting Affects Ability to Interpret Words,” says, people who text all of the time get used to a smaller list of words. (University of Calgary 2012, February 16 ScienceDaily. ) This is not surprising, because in order to communicate in a small number of characters, everyone uses short, abbreviated words or textwords. This consistency makes the text readable. You are not likely to use a bunch of words to describe how wonderful something is. You are more likely to use symbols such as emoticons. One of the things the article also pointed out is that people who text do not easily accept made up words. Maybe this is not so bad. Maybe the made up words are not very valuable to them. Knowing new words that actually connect to something you are learning or experiencing is important, but I do not think it is very important to be able to accept new made up words that are random.
A good part of texting is that people are communicating. If someone is not writing at all, then at least they are writing something and often they are communicating their feelings which are hard for many people to do. An emoticon could be a small step on the way to communicating how someone feels. This may not be good for their writing, but it could be good for their happiness. Another possible plus of texting that the article could be not considering is all of the people and ideas that you are exposed to when you text. While you will probably not expand your vocabulary by reading a text that tells you a friend liked a movie or book, if you did not have that way to communicate quickly, they might not ever mention it. Many small things that people experience are shared though texting. Today if you get a text and the person is at an interesting place, you can say, let’s facetime, and they can show you where they are. With technology getting more powerful every day, it is easy to see how a text could involve you in a whole new experience. Those experiences will expand your knowledge and your vocabulary. This author seemed to worry that texting was going to damage people’s ability to have a good vocabulary. I do not think this is true. People can read many books and also text all of the time.
I agree that if you only text and never read a book, you will have a problem, but you will also have a problem if you never talk to someone face to face or only watch television. I think this article had a tone that is too worrisome for what really will happen. Technology is already making text messages become more connected to other ways to communicate. There might be some way that texting could have these negative effects if it was your only way of communication, but no one I know is only communicating with text.