Social media is widely used in today’s society. It is used so much that a new way of communicating has emerged as a result. “Google” has become a verb as opposed to a company name. “Emoji” refers to those cute yellow faces we use to show emotion online. Has this changed the way we use language in real life?
New words are created, old words have new meanings
Language has evolved through the use of social media. What started off as an innocent word to describe taking a picture of yourself is Oxford Dictionary’s 2013 word of the year. “Selfie” is only one example of a word that has been created through social media. In 2015, Oxford Dictionary named the emoji “Face with Tears of Joy” the word of the year. Seriously!
Moreover, existing words have new meanings thanks to social media. When the word “wall” is said, I doubt you actually think of the white concrete that surrounds your room. Instead, it is widely known as the page on Facebook that your “friends” can post on. Examples of other words that have new meanings in social media are “like,” “unfriend,” and “tablet.”
Our constant engagement with social media has changed the way we interpret things. If someone were to text you right now and added a period at the end of the sentence, wouldn’t you think that they’re angry or irritated? Even though using a period is considered grammatically correct, social media has made grammar mean more than just grammar – it represents an emotion. Similar to the difference between “Okay” and “K.” Social media has made language, in general, more informal, thus changing the way we interact with people in the real world.
Increased amount of daily communications
Prior to the social media age, people often had a limited amount of social connections, since distance was getting in the way. Now, we are used to the luxury of being able to connect with people located all over the world. This has given us the need to keep in touch with as many people as possible!
Social media has started to change the course of language, but we love it anyway! We incorporate it into our daily vocabulary and whether it’s through text, social media, or in person this new lingo has become part of the way we communicate with each other.
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