I Can Haz Good Grammar?

I’m the type of person who can’t stand to see a typo anywhere. It irks me that the Internet is full of grammatical errors, typos, and bits of Internet-language that can sometimes be nearly incomprehensible.

Acronyms and single letters like idk, wtf, lol, omg, ttyl, y, u, and others can all be passed off as “legitimate” language use. I try not to use those, except for the occasional lol here and there. It’s gotten to the point that actually typing out “laughing out loud” has become ridiculous. The culture is definitely changing.

I use proper grammar in personal emails when the other person normally wouldn’t care about grammar, spelling, and punctuation. It’s just what I’m used to. I see all those abbreviations and they just get under my skin. My brother was talking to me a few days ago and he said something to the effect of “typing perfectly all the time makes you seem like a robot.” It got me thinking.

Does using proper grammar online really make you seem less like a person and more like a machine? I don’t think so. Often, spam bots misspell words and destroy the English language, too.

I’m not trying to be pretentious by using proper grammar – I’m just typing in the way that looks right to me. I don’t want to appear “careless.” But is using Internet-language really becoming the norm?

It bothers me that I hear stories about high school and middle school students who don’t know how to write a paper without using some form of Internet lingo. That’s sad. It makes them appear careless. It used to be common sense that you shouldn’t write papers or “professional” documents with the same diction you’d use to talk to a friend.

I know the English language is constantly changing, but I believe that Internet language should be kept within personal chats on the Internet. Save the bad grammar for the lolcats.

Kitty Editing

20 thoughts on “I Can Haz Good Grammar?

  1. Bad grammar bothers me too. I’m not too fond of the ur, lol, brb, ttyl style of language. It doesn’t bother me too much if done in an instant message, but reading an e-mail littered with this style is tacky in my opinion. And I’ll stop reading a book or blog if I come to too many run-on-sentences.

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  2. I concur.

    I don’t mind the occasional LOL or OMG . . . but when every word is butchered (in anything other than a text message), I am disinclined to continue reading.

    For text messages, with teeny tiny keyboards, abbreviations make sense. When typing on a full sized keyboard, they are not necessary and often distracting.

    When someone says “I haz a happy” . . . it’s like hearing a grown adult using baby talk when no babies are in the vicinity.

    Tx, Maggie. TTYL! πŸ˜‰

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    • I never considered that keyboard size would be a factor, but yes, it does make sense. My main worry is that the entire English language will someday be condensed into lol, ttyl and the like. Thanks, Nancy!

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  3. I agree, it is just laziness. I think it can also be harmful. People, especially kids need to know how to spell. I am pretty good speller but I sometimes struggle with grammar.

    Someone should make an app or software to install on phones and computers to MAKE you spell properly. Or use proper grammar if possible. It would be great for kid’s phones.

    I too like to spell it all out and avoid the abbreviations etc. Especially when quoting scripture or even talking about the Lord.

    Thanks

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    • I agree – the grammar and spell checkers they already have aren’t intuitive enough. And I know what you mean about spelling out the books of the Bible – sometimes the abbreviations can be confusing.

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  4. A Myers Briggs test would probably say you have a strong S facet to your personality. I hate the mis-use of apostrophes!

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    • I took that test before and I never had an S… odd. But that was back in high school, so perhaps I’ve changed! Thank you for subscribing and commenting, Nicole! πŸ™‚

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  5. You should check out the book “I Judge You When You Use Poor Grammar”. It’s good for a laugh, but it will probably leave you feeling a bit depressed as well.

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  6. Coming by to say hello and that I just finished my 100words entry and wrote about how February was over and time was going too fast, and OH MY GOD you’ve written almost exactly the same thing! SPOOKY!

    Completely agree with you on proper grammar and spelling by the way (though I’m guilty of using acronyms and shortening words like cuz and tho). The Internet is certainly to blame for making crappy spelling acceptable, but I think it’s also to do with lack of education. Stupid as it sounds, there used to be a lot more emphasis on this in schools.
    I work a job where we get written requests from customers, and their shoddy grasp of their own language is appalling! This is true for French and German speakers too, and you definitely notice a decline, the younger they get. I shudder to think how bad it’s going to be in another 10-20 years.

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    • I love coincidences like that…

      I think that ever since schools started ceasing to teach cursive, spelling and grammar skills have declined. Now the focus is on learning to type instead of to write, so that might have a lot to do with it. It’s sad when someone from another country who learned English as a second language has better skills than a native English speaker.

      Thank you for stopping by! πŸ™‚

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      • Hmmm that link to teaching cursive is most a interesting idea!

        Learning a language from scratch actually helps with spelling because you have to learn the grammar. You know the type of mistakes like “I should of known” (and equally, their vs there vs they’re etc) – foreigners are a lot less likely to make them because they learnt the structure behind what they’re saying. Native speakers write as they speak. It’s always been mindboggling to me that people can use words but have no real understanding of how they function. But I guess I don’t care how a car works either as long as it takes me from A to B. πŸ˜›

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        • Very true. I remember when I was learning Spanish, the structure of the language did help with the spelling and word order – I was forced to recall the rules of the language as I used it. You sort of absorb your native language by osmosis, so you’re not as mindful of structure all the time.

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  7. “UR” annoys me the most, though I’m not sure why.At least many of the other bits of online speak are acronyms (lol, ttyl, etc.). “UR” is just an abomination!

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  8. How about Boyz and gurlz? And how about a teacher writing them on the board only to realize moments later that it was internet slang being taught to the students. *yikes*

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