Monday, October 19, 2009

Txtspeak Artice – Lloyd, Jessica

Original article: “Arts Students Feel They're Second Class”, The Edmonton Journal. October 19, 2009.

@rts S2dents F33l They r 5econd Class

Cnstrction crAns hv b33n a cmmn site at da U of A in rcnt yrs. Thetr desgn mjr Nick Blais may b frtunat he cnt see ‘em frm his cramped s2dio in da FAB.

If the rm hd wndws, Blais mght dvlp a ca5e of fclty NV, snce da cr4nes crntly on cmps r B-ing used 2 dvlp giant new resrch palace5 fr sci and heal+h stdnts. In contrast 2 SOTA glass and steel struc.’s, Blais’s HB, the FAB, waz built in the rly 1970’s, wch is prbly y much of it resembles a CW bunker.

Instead 0f n4tural lite, FAB is m4nly bathed in a gloomi glow. Da color 5ch3m3 is gr-A and Brn, frm the t!les on da floor 2 the collection of rusted ‘r’t lining da ext. Itz 1 of the > buildings on cmps that doesn’t h4ve wirele$$ int akses.

3 dept – music, dr4m4 & 4rt – r crammed in2 a building bu!lt 4 2. Just 5 d3sks fit in2 Blais’s s2dio. Things g3t rly tight when stdntz start producing thetr mod3l3s of setz, light!ng and cos2ms.Round da crnr, mast s2dents r crammed in2 a back alcove form3rly occupied bi vending m4chines.

Acting mjrs have it evn worse, oftn arriving on cmps @ 5 a.m. 2 sign up 4 rehersal sp4ce. Dwadlers have 2 rehrs in hallw4ys and DRs. Hardly an env!ronment 2 in5pire cre8ive expression.

“On da 1 hand, Im blsd 2 have what I h4ve, because our s2dio has a gr8 env!ronment,” Blais saiz.

“On da other hand, Id love more sp4ce. Itz ez 2 get a lil jealous looking (ah-x cmps) @ those other buildings dat r nu, pristine & accessbl.

Although “txtspeak” allows us to quickly pass a message along, we have to decide whether the speed is worth the loss of proper English and punctuation. Are we breaking even? Abbreviated words tend to look like unintentional spelling mistakes to me; lets keep it clean before the mean streets of Txtville become overrun with superfluous vowels and inadequate syllables. Sounds like a new Facebook application if you ask me…


  1. I agree with Jessica that we should be using “clean” language versus “txt spk”. I also think there is more at stake, then grammar and loss of language when using “txt spk,” such as a loss of communication that occurs when life is summed up in a few short letters and an emotion icon.

  2. I'm interested in your metaphor of txt spk as a dirty language. Are the losses (of punctuation and proper English as you say) what make it dirty or are you also including the visual typography of numbers and other symbols - how they almost "cloud" the message (at least to those not fluent in txt spk)?

  3. I agree that most text speak, if done poorly, looks like unintentional spelling mistakes. That might be why the older generation has a biased against it and I'm on their side. I think text speak should stay where it belongs: in text messages between friends. This class exercise showed us that even though text speak may be quick, it is not always easier.