Most of you hear it all the time that Social media is a fast growing technology and connects you to the rest of the world. If you're a college student, you may know how popular it is; rather I should say, how addictive it is! How many people do you know who don't have a Facebook page? Be honest. How often do you sit through your lecture of 90 minutes without updating a status or checking out others' status and photos? Nowadays, Facebook has become an important part of college students' life. Facebook users have lower grades than non-users, according to the survey of college student, who also ironically said that social networking site never interferes in their study. But the fact is, it does!
Like tweeting, instant messaging, and texting, grammar rules aren't required for Facebook status updates or photo captions. Lisa Lebduska, a writing instructor, argues in an essay that the problem with Facebook actually isn't that it makes punctuation optional. So, do you think, Facebook is really turning students into terrible writers? The real issue with Facebook might be that it creates a “mirror” where students “write only to themselves and to those who are just like them”. And hence, they have to do nothing with the grammar while updating their status.
Facebook has opened the door to abbreviations, shorthand typing, text lingo and emoticons. These messages include various spelling and grammar errors posted across profiles for everyone to see. It's a daily ritual for most of us. You log on to Facebook, update your status, comment on others' and then, you see them! Those mistakes; a misspelled word here, a missing apostrophe there and the misuse of homophones everywhere!
Many people have actually welcomed the social networking sites as they force people to read and write more often. Though this is true, there are several negative effects of Facebook. Many students as well as teachers are facing problems due to these social networking sites. Most teachers are complaining that this social networking communication, with lack of grammar and misspellings are seeping through student's school writings. For some students, bad spelling and poor grammar on Facebook is not only annoying, but also disheartening.
As a professor of English, it's my job to strengthen my students' speaking as well as writing skills. But what I see in the classroom isn't always what they practice outside the classroom. I can only see this problem becoming worse, and I fear that no teacher can really control it. My main concern is for my students who just don't get it and for those who I tell over and over to clean up the grammar errors. Because if your resume if full of “LOLs” and “u's”, the professional on the other end is going to be the only one laughing out loud, at you.
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