Innovation and inspiration for modern parents.
Get inspiring ideas, parent hacks and tips about tech, life and your child's future.

Nearly there!

Just check your inbox for an email from with a link to complete your registration.

If you don't see it, please check your junk folder.

Should we stress about txt sp3ak?

4 years ago

2 parents have answered

Holly Seddon admin
Holly Seddon Editor-in-chief of Kent, UK

Thanks to the Levenson enquiry, the British public now know that their own prime minister is partial to it. Some people downright hate it but an awful lot of us do it. We text in our droves, with 58% of people in the UK communicating via texts on a daily basis last year and 73% in the US), while only 47% made a daily mobile call.

And we’re not just texting, we’re txt-ing, and LOL-ing and even, in some cases, ROFL-ing. Wwhile it may be a bit cringey when David Cameron does it, is there really anything wrong with text speak? What about when it creeps into work emails or children’s homework?

Yes, language evolves, but there are still certain crucial benchmarks in place. For example, school work. Back in 2008, a Teachers TV study found that four in 10 teachers struggled to understand some pupils’ writing due to the littering of text abbreviations. Colloquial language may evolve faster than formal, but it is formal language that essential things like exam papers and job applications require. Perhaps more emphasis is needed on teaching children and teenagers about context and adaptation?

That said, a 2009 study published in Reading and Writing suggests we should all get off our high horses and relax (rlx? R3lx?) because text speak actually provides a ‘work out for the brain’. Hmn.

My grandfather was a magistrate who hated denim. He felt it was unpicking the seams of society and dispatched anyone who stood before his court wearing jeans with a harsher penalty than those in a suit. I worry I sound like him when I say that, yes, I do judge people that use text speak outside of text messages (and actually, to excess, within text messages). I judge them harshly and dispatch with them quicker. But here’s the thing, I’m not the only one. Whether rightly or wrongly, it’s people like me that can sometimes stand between one of today’s teenagers and a job, a reference for a college application or work experience.

Sure, a lot of people won’t bat an eye lid but is it really worth the risk?

Do you encourage your children to use proper punctuation and spelling whenever they communicate? Or should we all relax a little bit?

1 Reply Share:
Opinion 4 years ago
Paul Sutton
Paul Sutton I work in a school Torquay, GB

I think it depends on the situation, i use irc so would get kicked in some channels for just using Lol as short hand,

in others the ops are more relaxed,

in more formal situations you probably would not put LOL or txt spelling on an application for for example.

Context. and I think we need to ensure people understand when to and not to use that.

0 Reply Share:
Opinion 3 years ago

Did you find the answer you were looking for? ×

yes no