r u kewl enuf?

if u get dis txt ur kewl

For some of you, that line might look like an eye chart, but for today’s illiterate graduates it’s the new English. That’s right, gone are capitals and periods. The series of letters at the top of this column makes sense to people.

A recent study says social networking websites such as Twitter and Facebook have killed the English language because (not cuz) people are taking shortcuts to spell out words, never using all the letters.

The Canadian Press reports professors across the country are ensuring (not insuring) that students know how to spell and can pass an English skills exam before (not b4) getting accepted. Such is the case at Waterloo University.

The blame is placed on text messaging (not txt msg) and limits in the amount of characters that can be sent. You might have some longer words that you need to cut down, therefore a shortcut is needed.

While this might be a plausible argument, perhaps the blame can be placed on the education system itself.

With all due respect to Mr. William Shakespeare, I’ve never encountered his language since graduating high school (not skool) 15 years ago. I had to learn about Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and a couple (not cpl) other historic stories but rarely was emphasis put on learning the language I use every day (not everyday).

Don’t get me wrong, in college I was bored out of my mind in composition and grammar (not grammer) class but after being a professional writer and editor for years, I grew to appreciate words. It might sound silly, but I felt kind of (not kinda) stupid going into college not knowing some simple rules of the language.

How sad was it to make that discovery in college? Pretty sad.

At the same time, this lack of knowledge also made me wonder why I didn’t know (not no) such things. Did I forget? Was I not paying attention? That couldn’t be.

Because I’m (not im) a packrat I looked back through my Grade 10, 11 and 12 English work and found more notes and assignments about Shakespeare and poetry than about everyday (not every day) word usage.

While we’re quick to blame technology for this so-called language laziness, perhaps we need to look at the education and training we had in the first place.

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