linds's picture

Would it be so hard to type in relatively coherent sentences? To spell out your words, and include the vowels? To refrain from mixing numbers, letters and symbols?

I love the Internet. But the worst thing about it is the way it allows users to degrade language. Want me to take you seriously? To listen to you? To make an effort to communicate? Then take the time to write it out.

Netspeak has spilled over into everyday speech, especially into the speech of the younger set. My 14 and 15 year old step-siblings speak in shorthand all the time. They think it's "cool" -- when in reality it's rather confusing, and makes them sound less intelligent.

Words are power. Words allow you to communicate. Your slang does not transcend the boundaries of normal language. It inhibits you, prevents you from saying what you want to say. It's a safety net. It allows you to get by without increasing your vocabulary.

The fewer words you know, the fewer thoughts you can have. Think about it.

If you want to be real, and honest, and really make your point, use your language well. Words aren't static. They are open to shifts, to redefinition. They won't confine you. They'll free you.



JB's picture


I agree 100% linds. some people use to much netspeak. I man a "lol" is good every now and again, but speaking entirely in netspeak? I gree it does denote intellegence and makes the user seem dumb. if you thought and spoke entirely in neyspeak, you would not be able to make a coherent sentene... wait some peole already cant...

Leisa's picture

Woo hoo!

This is great and true!

"Men use thought only as authority for their injustice, and employ speech only to conceal their thoughts."

to which I'll add:
"I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

jeff's picture

Actually, there is hope...

for those of us who tend to form complete, proper sentences to join in this net tradition.

Use that and you can sound incoherent, too!


eTgen's picture

linds, i agree. netspeakn


i agree. netspeaknot good. i mean wotsup w/ all this sillyness. y cant ppl just write stuff out? Yo, i never use ns. it is dumb.




marcelle42's picture


Amen, Amen, Amen

Boygasm's picture


Netspeak has both it;s good and bad. The good thing about netspeak it cuts down elaborated typing and saves you the hassle in having to figure out to spell. The bad thing, of course your mind becomes warped and you'll loose your fuction in english gramar.

I often find myself in a position where a person or friends tries to strike up a converstations with me and sometimes they can be really confusing. I'll go "WHAT" or "IM SORRY CAN YOU SPEAK IN ENGLISH?". Sometimes it can be really fusterating when I often having to correct them in their mistakes or scrolling up and reread the converstation to get the gist of it.

I myself as a Deaf person, have alot of experinces in bad english gramars amongst the deaf community whom has learned ASL growing up. Its elquent flow in signs cut them short without using "thes, and, but" and stuff like that. For example you would say Its fucking cold out out. While they say Outside cold!!! Burrr!!!!

I can relate to Linds point of view.

Luke's picture

I Detest Netspeak!

I really can't understand why relatively intelligent people would stop speaking complete, coherent sentances in favor of rediculous acronyms and nonsensical phrases. T S Eliot would be ashamed! I feel the same way about the word "like" as a passing word, but if I begin on that I may have to start killing people. No worries, unless this trend towards babbling idiocy continues:)


technomuse's picture

It's an intelligence test.

Talk to people at random all over the internet.

Think of a question to ask people, that requires intelligence to answer.

Ask people that question.

Tell me how many netspeakers are able to give the correct answer.


OMG french people are so dum, they talk totally weird

the extra fun thing about language is that it's always changing. lol could be in the official dictionary next year and then the joke would be on the haters. you say that slang doesn't transcend the borders of normal language and that it allows you to get by without increasing your vocabulary. well, not to be slangy, but duh, slang IS vocabulary. today's slang is tomorrow's queen's english. maybe ts eliot would not be into it but it's hard to say, cuz the wasteland fails to take a real stand on the subject. personally, instant message talk is not my favorite because it mostly seems to be abbreviations, which are only funny as a joke, and not very expressive or useful except maybe in typing. but it doesn't matter what anyone thinks about lol and brb, including me. cuz the future has not been asking for advice lately; it just happens. the point is that it's not possible to degrade language. language is dynamic; it adapts; it is sexy and elastic. that's why they invented the thing called linguistics.

by the way, i'm not meaning to flame-- i totally see where yr coming from; i'm just adding another perspective to the discussion.

right on

linds's picture


Slang is language used by an in-group. So it does hinder conversation on a global level. And it allows people in the in-group to get by without learning more of a universal vocabulary.

Personally, the OED is a decent source for what constitutes vocabulary and what doesn't. But I'm a conservative. :-)