Write the Right Way …ROFL!
Professor Sugata Mitra has laid a challenge to tradition, claiming that it is no longer necessary to learn the old values of grammar and spelling; now there is a new tongue in town, one shaped by technology, by convenience, and by ease. Controversial to say the least, but an idea worth pondering for a moment.
Let’s begin with an introduction to Prof. Sugata. Born in 1952 in India, in 2013 he was the winner of the TED Prize, and is most well-known for his “hole in the wall” experiment in Delhi, India, in which he set up a computer that was connected to the internet, placed it in a ‘hole in a wall,’ – hence the name – and allowed children to teach themselves how to use it.
The results showed that children without any prior knowledge of computers could teach themselves how to surf the internet and use Google. A highly-regarded mind in the fields of education and literacy, this new proposal came from a source many would consider reputable. That said, Sugata himself does not want to believe in what he is claiming, saying “My entire background tells me, ‘No, no, it is really bad what you are saying’, but I think there is change and we have to learn to live with it.”
Today the younger generation are accustomed to writing cryptically, using simplified words and phrases I’m sure many of us have already come into contact with, and if it is possible to convey a sense of emotion and purpose through the use of this language just as it is through language in the traditional sense, then why should this alternative not be met with some support and consideration?
The basic building blocks of grammar and spelling have been around for many a generation, but they were not always the same. Things do change right? Where for art thou that still speak the tongue of Shakespears linguistic-al brilliance? And ye olde English? You probably speak a different jargon from your parents, but don’t forget that they were ‘rad’ and ‘with it’ once too. These words have been left to the history books, so too maybe, the way in which we are accustomed to writing now…
We must not get carried away here, there’s no need to find the nearest youngster and make them teach us how to speak; this change, if it does continue, would take an indefinite amount of time, and there is always going to be value in the old ways; professional settings are still a long way off allowing such a language, it wouldn’t be a gr8 idea to write the txt of your job application replacing ‘be’ with ‘b,’ ‘you’ with ‘u,’ or ‘are’ with ‘r.’ These are sure fire ways to loose ur job, the employer would say “omg, lol…rofl…” then bin all your hard work.
In the end this way of talking may become even more common place than it is already — it has benefits for those with little time or a character limit; but for now, we can be safe in the knowledge that people still value the ability to write in ‘proper’ English.
Do you agree with using these new words and phrases? Or do you prefer traditional grammar and spelling even as the way of the future?