Social Media and the English Language

The English language is ever adapting to the slang of each generation, and ever more so as technology progresses. With new technology such as “smart phones” and “tablets”, people are sending messages, responding to emails and posting on social media sites on the go. Since this has aptly been deemed the “Now” generation, everything is considered to be needed now. Every piece of information must be downloaded or uploaded as fast as possible and reach the largest possible audience. It is no longer enough to just have friends on Facebook if you want to be anyone in the social media frenzy of today. You must also have acquaintances who follow you on every social media site out there, you must the most “likes” to get the recognition and more followers.

The language of the internet is all about who know, who knows you, and how many people you can get to do your bidding. The biggest change to the English language because of this need for speed online, is the new slang for the internet. Shortening words until they are no longer recognizable outside of the internet world is a must, and creating acronyms for whole sentences, such as “lol” or “omw” meaning “laugh/laughing out loud” and “on my way”, has also become mainstream.

The original formation of the English language (in America) was based off it’s British counterparts when the colonies were first formed, and from there branched off after America gained her independence from Britain. The United States has always stressed that it was founded on freedom, freedom from oppression, but it still borrows a lot of it’s language from other languages, twisting or changing it to suit it’s purpose.

The English language will continue to do so in the future, and I believe it can eventually become a universal language as many foreigner’s currently speak both their native tongue as well as English, especially in countries that deal or trade with America. With the millions of people online using social media, the changes in how the English language develops will continue, and it will continue to create a new language in social medias that only those fluent with the internet will understand. Those who do not learn or keep up will find themselves left behind.