Date of Award
Honors Program Director
Dr. Gavin Keulks
Since the invention of texting in the 1990s, it has become a vital tool of interaction used by people all over the world. Texting is a unique form of communication because it uses written language to emulate aspects of spoken language through the usage of textisms – emoticons, abbreviations, acronyms, and more. It is these textisms that have been the cause of much hysteria and concern over the future of the English language, and most of the focus has been put on the biggest proponents of texting: young people. This senior thesis reviews the history of standardization in writing and research on texting to investigate the linguistic purpose and function of textisms. I surveyed members of my community to learn patterns in usage of and attitudes toward texting with a focus on demographics and claims against texting, with the goal to assert that texting is an incredibly innovative form of language that enhances, rather than degrades, English.
Culpepper, Sydney, "Young People Are Always On Their Phones: A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Texting" (2017). Honors Senior Theses/Projects. 151.