Linguist John McWhorter: Txtng is killing language. JK!!!
Communication and the languages we have created from this process, are only human. Therefore, these rules will adapt and change so long as human beings continue to use language to communicate with. Note: I used a preposition to end this thought (sentence), but indeed also very correct.
This is a very natural and constantly evolving use of language – made by human beings who communicate in any language. The products, results and effects of how we use language will continue to evolve as they are created only by human cognition; a script to describe ourselves, our perceptions and our universe.
Texting, modern shorthand (and even archaic shorthand) and the changes with how we use and write language are not killing off good grammar or killing off the English language (or any other languages). These are the effects of human evolution with communication. We create and adapt language to describe our world to ourselves and to each other.
Given enough time and space especially the ever-present interconnectedness of using the Internet today, every language does and will evolve as we continue to communicate with each other through language. The Internet has quickly closed these gaps but has forever changed how we communicate with the languages that we have created.
Always worry more about the content of what is being communicated rather than the actual correctness and grammar usage in any language. Lest ye be exposed as a Grammar Nazi with no creativity, logic and an inability to understand anything abstract. Words and word-terms really are, ambiguous and open to interpretation depending on the context within which they are used, example: “I’m so green with envy” but am I really green? ;)
So with a facetious grin at all those troublesome Grammar Nazi’s we all encounter in our travels across the Interwebs, I have compiled a list of the worst offending use of language known to English speakers, oh my! Enjoy!
The Dirty Top 30:
A list of the most
Commonly misused grammar
In the English language and how to fix it.
For people who actually waste time
Worrying about such things on Social Media sites*
- They’re: Contraction of “They are”. The apostrophe takes the place of the vowel “a” in are.
- Their: Shows possession. It belongs to someone. “Their bananas.” If you want to call them bananas, then you would write: “They’re bananas!”
- There: Specifies a location, a place. “Where did you put my pen?”, “Over there on the desk.”
- You’re: Contraction of “You are”. The apostrophe takes the place of the vowel “a” in are.
- Your: Shows possession, “Is this your hat?” “No. I thought it was your hat!”
- It’s: Contraction of “It is”. The apostrophe takes the place of the vowel “i” in is.
- Its/Its’: Shows possession, “The book has lost its jacket.”
- We’re: Contraction of , “We are”. The apostrophe takes the place of the vowel “a” in are.
- Were: Past tense of “are”, “Were they going to the mall today?”
- Where: Specifies a location, “Where are they going shopping?”
- Then: A Point in time. “The mall closed at 9 pm so I left then.”
- Than: A method of comparison. “Rather than…” “More or less than…” “I’d rather eat popcorn than potato chips.” “I’d rather have more popcorn than potato chips.” “I need to eat less popcorn than what I do now.”
- Two: The number 2.
- To: Indicates motion, “I want to go shopping.”
- Too: Excessively or in addition to. “I ate too much popcorn and I drank some Coca-Cola too.”
- Loose: Not fixed in place, “My button came loose.”
- Lose: Cease to keep. “I always lose my buttons.”
- Affect: An action. “If I eat too much popcorn, how will it affect me?”
- Effect: A result/consequence. “The effects of eating too much popcorn made me sick.”
- Could’ve : Could have. “I could’ve gone to the mall but instead I went to the movies and ate too much popcorn.”
- Could of: Incorrectly transposing English slang from speech of “could’ve/could have” to “could of” in writing. Just don’t ;)
- An: “An” is used before words starting with a vowel sound (feminine), regardless of whether the word begins with a vowel letter or not. Words that have an actual vowel in them but also have a vowel sound: “an apple”; “an oat”. Words pronounced with a vowel sound: “an hour “; “an heir“. For American English: “an herb“. The “h” sound in American English pronunciation is silent. Therefore, this is correct in the dialect of English they speak.
- For British English: “a herb”. Most Canadians, Australians, and New Zealanders (including most Common Wealth Nations) do pronounce the “h”. Therefore, this is also correct depending on culture and regional dialect.
- A: Only used when a word begins with a consonant sound: “a bird”; “a square”; “a banana.”
- Either …or: Only used in conjunction with each other. Never “Either…nor”. “You either do your homework or finish your chores.”
- Neither …nor: Again, only used in conjunction with each other. Never “Neither…or”. “Neither the soccer team nor the lacrosse team are doing very well this season.”
- Not only …but (also): “Not only is she intelligent, but she also has a great personality.”
- Both …and: “Both the volley ball team and the tennis team are doing well this year.”
- Whether …or: “Whether you stay or you go, it’s your decision.”
- Just as …so: “Just as many Canadians love ice hockey, so do many Americans love ice hockey too.”
Final thought about all of these English grammar “rules”: Unless you are writing for academia, business or publishing, please refrain from chastising others online (or really anywhere) for their novel use of language; it’s redundant, uneducated and immature. None of us process things* in exactly the same way; some who process written languages deal with an entirely different world than the rest of us called, Dyslexia. Tip: Dyslexia has nothing to do with intelligence at all. Here’s a list that also includes authors Agatha Christie and Hans Christian Andersen, both of whom were diagnosed with Dyslexia: List of People Diagnosed With Dyslexia. So write on! (without prejudice and cognitive bias…).
Remember: We are what we create, therefore communicate it well. And always, f*ck the grammar, say what you mean ;)
For V from Evey <3