In Will We Stop Speaking and Just Text?, Harbeck discusses whether live internet vernacular English will replace spoken English.
Harbeck supports this hypothetical by introducing the many different aspects to live internet vernacular English (Live). He discusses the emotions behind text speech by bringing up the term “wtf.” Harbeck argues that text speech can convey the writer’s emotion. For example, people often use “wtfffffff” for emphasis, but it doesn’t represent speech in any literal way. Similarly, he brings up another common text reference where people “shred capitalization standards to convey derision.” This is when someone shifts their capitalization by writing “sOrRy i dOnT WaNt tO tAlK aBouT ThiS” to mock the other person. Although, most people don’t see this as speech, it is. Harbeck argues that this is language. He believes Live is an idiom of a certain social set because the mockery type of texting is a result of SpongeBob SquarePants memes and Bitcoin Talk Forums. Whether live internet vernacular English will replace spoken English is up in the air right now, but people will continue to adapt speech into text.
Throughout the article, I agreed with Harbeck about his opinions regarding acronyms, popular text culture, and different social sets. Although I don’t believe texting will replace speech indefinitely, I understand why people would think this. I find myself applying the same terms I use over text in person with my friends, but obviously they understand what I’m saying. However, my parents would not. For example, the term “tea” now translates to “gossip” because of how people interpreted the Kermit the Frog meme where he sips hot tea. Social media users coined this term, and now older generations are learning about this adaptation.