Virtually every day I get an email or phone call — occasionally even a letter — from someone asking a linguistic question or wanting to share a linguistic observation. For example, in May I received this from a journalist:. Here in Orange County, California, 11 to year-olds are increasingly using acronyms in their conversations. Text message shorthand is now everyday talk. Is it good or bad for language? Why is it happening?

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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Txtng by David Crystal. Text messaging has spread like wildfire. Indeed texting is so widespread that many parents, teachers, and media pundits have been outspoken in their criticism of it.

Does texting spell the end of western civilization? In this humorous, level-headed and insightful book, David Crystal argues that the panic over texting is misplaced. Crystal, a world renowned linguist and pr Text messaging has spread like wildfire.

Crystal, a world renowned linguist and prolific author on the uses and abuses of English, here looks at every aspect of the phenomenon of text-messaging and considers its effects on literacy, language, and society. He explains how texting began, how it works, who uses it, and how much it is used, and he shows how to interpret the mixture of pictograms, logograms, abbreviations, symbols, and wordplay typically used in texting.

He finds that the texting system of conveying sounds and concepts goes back a long way--to the very origins of writing. And far from hindering children's literacy, texting turns out to help it. Illustrated with original art by Ed MacLachlan, a popular cartoonist whose work has appeared in Punch, Private Eye, New Statesman, and many other publications, Txting: The Gr8 Db8 is entertaining and instructive--reassuring for worried parents and teachers, illuminating for teenagers, and fascinating for everyone interested in what's currently happening to language and communication.

Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 7. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Txtng , please sign up. Lists with This Book.

Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of Txtng: The Gr8 Db8. In a digital age where no one seems to be able to live without a smart phone at hand, here's a relevant book addressing the passionate debate regarding how our languages' future might be if at all affected by texting. The never ending complaint is well known: we give in to the need for speed, and so text each others messages those grammar is butchered, mercilessly massacred, throwing thus out of the window the rules and conventions that had been established over centuries.

Is it just a matter o In a digital age where no one seems to be able to live without a smart phone at hand, here's a relevant book addressing the passionate debate regarding how our languages' future might be if at all affected by texting. Is it just a matter of time before those rules are all but forgotten, and the future of English or any other language, for that matter about 2 die just lik dat 4ever cuz no1 can spel all? Youngsters especially are now accused, more and more, of being completely ignorant when it comes to spelling; the blame being put on, you guess it, their digital gadgets and electronic doolalis with which they not only get their thumbs overexcited, but, also, vandalise and ransack, text messages after text messages, their poor language!

The never ending complaint is well known, and yet David Crystal, the famous linguist, tackles here the issue; debunking, not without some quirky smirks, a few myths going around. In fact, he tells what texting really implies in terms of linguistics; and that from pictograms, logograms, ellipsis, abbreviations, initialisms, and other contractions, there's no need to panic: here's nothing new under the sun.

Technology is new, but all the language plays we are dealing with certainly aren't a reason which, actually, explains their so rapid and popular appropriation and success…. As for the rampant illiteracy rate among our poor youth mmh? Here's the surprise: quoting studies to support him, David Crystal demonstrates that text messages, with all their features and peculiarities differentiating them from other contexts eg the writing of a school homework essay You get it: fascinating and easy to read, witty too, a few preconceived ideas are quite turned to shred.

It's a quick read, but a gr8 db8 indeed! View all 6 comments. Jan 08, Tim P rated it liked it. This book is not written by a cranky old man, an exasperated teacher, nor a giggly 15 year old girl twittering about her love for Twilight characters. It is written by a linguistics professor, which is what makes it so fascinating. Weighing in on the debate about whether texting is destroying the English language or whether it is a natural evolution of the language, Crystal compiles a series of compelling essays that can be devoured in one sitting.

Especially interesting: the cultural difference This book is not written by a cranky old man, an exasperated teacher, nor a giggly 15 year old girl twittering about her love for Twilight characters. Especially interesting: the cultural differences in texting in Europe and Asia. Recommend, especially if you teach or have teenagers. I did think it was weird that the entire works cited was just web sites, though.

I am one of those people who never got into the whole texting craze, primarily because I hardly ever use my cell phone and I rarely chat with my friends online. Even when I do, I try to write in full sentences and be as clear in my prose as possible.

However, I am not beyond ever condescending to the new texting abbreviations, and would occasionally pepper my chats with LOL, ROTFL, and of course ', nor would I begrudge my interlocutors when they do the same. So, I am not someone who gets too flu I am one of those people who never got into the whole texting craze, primarily because I hardly ever use my cell phone and I rarely chat with my friends online.

So, I am not someone who gets too flustered with texting as such. It's texting that happens in inappropriate settings that really gets to me. I like to interact with people in various online forums, and when they write whole essays in txt-speak, and I find myself spending more time decoding what they wrote than on the content of their arguments, then I take an exception to this whole business of texting.

I am writing all this in order to give you my overall perspective on texting prior to reading this book. My attitude could be summed up as ambivalent to weary. So I decided to pick up this book and learn more about texting from a professional linguist, someone who has invested a great deal of time to study texting habits and put it in a perspective of language use and development in general. And for the most part, David Crystal does a wonderful job at that.

The book is filled with nice and illuminating examples, the parallels to previous changes in our use of language were appropriate and thought provoking. The book does a great job in convincing me that there is really nothing either deviant or inappropriate about how texting came to be. And I was also convinced that people who txt are not ruining the English language nor are they hurting their own writing skills.

However, the book does not deal at all with the use of texting in online discussion forums, my own personal pet peeve. But other than that, it is a very well written book. It also provides an illuminating and handy glossary of main terms, as well a list of text abbreviations from eleven different languages.

These are fun to look at and an interesting glimpse into how other languages deal with texting. If you ever have to come across texting in your daily life and who doesn't these days , and whatever your attitude to texting may be, you could benefit from reading this interesting little book. Feb 07, Joel Arnold rated it really liked it. The book discusses texting from a linguistic standpont. Crystal identifies the linguistic mechanisms and dynamics at work in texting and places it in historical context.

One chapter also gives a limited discussion of texting in other languages. If you like linguistics you will probably enjoy this book. The primary focus of the book, however, is the common allegation that texting is destroying people's ability to write and communicate legibly. Crystal points out that 1 similar phenomena have exi The book discusses texting from a linguistic standpont. Crystal points out that 1 similar phenomena have existed throughout English history, 2 many of the reports of linguistic corruption because of texting are overblown or patently untrue.

Turning the debate on its head, he argues that texting actually has a positive influence on language skills. I enjoyed this book because it provided a perspective contrary to what seems faddish recently. Crystal offered a realistic linguistic evaluation of what is going on, acknowledging that people will adapt and use technology in ways that are fundamentally the same. If you want to understand his argument of the book in a few minutes, read the first and last chapters.

Highlights that were interesting to me: -Many of the "new" linguistic dynamics aren't new at all—similar things have been happening for more than years.

On the other hand, each language evidences distinctive mechanisms stemming from distinctive phenomena in that language. Sep 16, Moira rated it really liked it. Excellent, witty and easy read - and a convincing argument. I started out as someone who hated the way text speak was apparently massacring the language Feb 10, Nina Chachu rated it really liked it.

A bit academic in places, but a pretty readable "defence" of texting. Didn't talk much about the impact of texting on the developing world, but one can't have everything!


Txtng: The Gr8 Db8

I n his study of text messaging culture, linguist David Crystal asks us to picture the investors' meeting when the mobile phone was first unveiled. We've created a method of calling anybody, any time, anywhere, the inventors might have said. Phone home from the middle of a field or hear the voice of a loved one atop Everest! One more thing: we want to put in a facility that allows people to thumb a message of no more than characters, in case they want to communicate that way instead. It is ugly, clunky and retrogressive. Yet the "short message service", or SMS, thrived during the mobile telecommunications boom and billion SMS texts had been sent worldwide by Such rapid and widespread adoption, inevitably, pinged panic radars, especially given the phenomenon's popularity with teenagers.


Txting: the gr8 db8 by David Crystal

The prolific populariser of linguistics David Crystal strikes again, this time with a readable and informative account of the phenomenon of texting. And what a phenomenon it is: a decade ago, texting was virtually unknown; by some 2. Crystal argues convincingly that the doom-mongers who say texting is a linguistic disaster have their facts wrong: the majority of texted words are correctly spelt and the playful use of acronyms, vowel-less words, rebuses and logographs all have their roots in older linguistic practice. Txting is full of examples of inventive texting tricks, in English and many other languages around the world. I liked learning that "a3" means "Any time, any place, anywhere", and that the French way of texting "cassette" is "k7".


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The lists of texting abbreviations from numerous languages other than Engilsh is this book's greatest strength. Otherwise, Crystal simply points out the antecedents of text messaging. Crystal provides an informed, lucid overview to the what, who, how, and why of the global texting phenomenon. The focus is on language, but Crystal comments on social and cultural aspects of texting

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