If you’re of a certain generation, you might well hate text speak. You know what it is, a mix of abbreviations, misspellings and numbers used as shorthand to communicate by text and instantmessaging. If it truly annoys you, then you’re out of luck. A new survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project has shown that teensadmit that text speak is finding its way into their school work. 50% says they use the informal writing styles of texting in their school work, while 38% use acronyms, and 25% put in emoticons likesmileys. However, before you think there’s no hope for the next generation, take heart. The vast majority of teens differentiate between text speak and “real” writing –in fact, they don’t consider the former to be writing at all, but the equivalent of a phone call or a hallways greeting. Girls use text speak more than boys, according to the survey. They recognize the importance of good writing, and 86% of them understand the importance of good writing to success in life. But they feel they need more encouragement and teaching to become goodwriters, Amanda Lenhart, a senior research specialist at the Pew Internet & American Life Project, told TechNewsWorld. "They would like tosee more instruction, more class time and the opportunity to use some of the technological tools and use computer-based applications to help build some enthusiasm for writing. There’s a desire todraw that enthusiasm for electronic communications and bring it into more school-based writing. Educators as well as teens think that bringing technology into the classroom might have thatresult."
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