Call me a Grammar Nazi, but I really do hate to receive text messages littered with SMS abbreviations. It makes the prescriptivist in me shudder with horror to see language thus abused.  And it's not that I don't recognise that language is dynamic and evolves with time - because it is and does. The principle reason why I'm not a fan of textese, as it's known, is that it's impinging on other forms of communication, as well. Now, it's not uncommon to receive emails and other professional documents written in this abbreviated hand. I've even had an attorney complain to me how a young article clerk drafted a court document in textese - quelle horreur!

The Case For and Against Textese
Surely one needs to know the rules of language before one can subvert them (the great ee cummings springs to mind)? Is there a place at all for textese or should it be outlawed forthwith?

Use It or Lose It?

Ultimately, there's a time and a place for textese and we should all be smart enough to know when it is and isn't appropriate. Pushed for time and need to get a quick message out to your buddy that you can't meet her later - it's quite fine to scribble in textese. Apply for a job at my copywriting agency (double shock, horror, gasp since we're language service providers) by presenting a cover letter using sms-speak (and peppered with smilies) - not so much. 

For a visual look at texting's impact on the English language, see this infographic:


Text Talk
by OnlineSchools.
Explore more infographics like this one on the web's largest information design community - Visually.