Influence of Texting on Literacy

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Majority of people in developed countries own smart phones that have the ability to send and receive text messages. Texting, short messaging services, has existed since the early 1990s and today, 64% of teenagers in the United States participate in texting. Psychologists from various universities such as Coventry University and University of Tasmania have composed studies to establish if texting does, in fact, have an affect on literacy. Texting and literacy have been shown to be linked in these various studies and articles. Today, literacy refers to the “ability to decode information in various orthographic formats, including digital media, to make meaning from it, and to encode information into those formats to communicate ideas to…show more content…
In other words, many studies have shown texting does improve literacy skills. However, other educators and psychologists believe texting can harm the comprehension of people. In contrast to the previous statements, other professionals state texting can have a negative affect on literacy. Niall Ferguson explains, “It’s an unmissable trend. Even if you don’t have teenage kids, you’ll see other people’s offspring slouching around, eyes averted, tapping away oblivious to their surroundings” (Ferguson 2011). In this article, Ferguson is explaining some side effects teenagers can portray in relation to texting. Instead of being attentive and energetic, teenagers today are lethargic and lazy. If teens are becoming more and more distracted because of texting, this can affect their literacy rates in school and simply everyday life. Subsequently, a therapist and educator, Peter Wornonoff wrote an article stating, “Texting has come along with a flourish, making a big impact among them. This habit forming menace can influence kids to spell incorrectly or get confused about the correct usage.

We should not tolerate these activities, else it might endanger their progress. Many common daily words have been shortened by SMS. It is likely that it might affect much of their ability to spell, since their minds are in the formation stage” (Wornonoff 2007). Peter Wornonoff makes a decent counter argument by mentioning that adolescent
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