Does bad grammar and spelling go unpunished on social media? Well the simple answer is yes, and why is that? It’s because they are not answerable to anybody, or so they think.
In this age of ‘text-speak’ most people abbreviate words wherever possible for a number of reasons. Firstly, more words cost more money. Have you seen the little advice box that pops up when writing a text on a phone that this message will be ‘2 x SMS Messages’? Secondly I think in the throw away society we live in, one mistake isn’t seen as detrimental to a business, but unfortunately that’s entirely dependent upon who sees that mistake, and with social media you’re opening yourself up to scrutiny world-wide. And finally, it’s simply a matter of time, abbreviations take less of it.
This habit of writing in ‘text-speak’ has for many become the ‘norm’ in communicating on social media sites. The Younger generation posting information on Facebook and Twitter often write in language that is only comprehensible to their peers and perhaps in some cases, with a more localized vocabulary that you would expect. This begs the question, would a message posted by somebody in London be easily understood by a ‘friend’ in Glasgow or Sydney or New York? Possibly not, or at least they may have to think twice to be able to interpret it. Social media by it’s very nature has few boundaries and can be read by millions worldwide. Which is why it’s so vitally important that our message is correctly spelt and punctuated.
Does it really matter if we get spellings wrong? Again I think it’s a matter of age and social circles. If tackled on poor spelling, one can always put it down to a ‘typo’. It is certainly true that readers rarely see the authors handwriting these days, which clearly means we can hide behind a typo here or there. Who cares I hear you say, but isn’t it just a sign of further moral decay and falling standards in today’s society? One can tell a lot about the writer from his or her grammar and spelling.
In a world where we are all trying to get our message across, be it advertising, voicing opinion, news or whatever it is we are trying to say, grammar and spelling matter. Use spell-checkers where possible, often this software will also give hints about grammar. Check your facts before posting anything, how embarrassing is it to fail to make a point because you have spelt the name of a major protagonist wrong? If people can’t understand you, you’ve wasted your time, and these days more than ever before, time is money.
Don’t hesitate to contact me if you spot any glaring errors!