Nowadays, teenagers no longer use their phones to make calls to their family and friends, they use text messaging (Coe and Oakhill).
The use of text messaging services has grown rapidly since the year 1992 when the first text message was sent. In the year 2011, sixty percent of people from all over the globe were active in text messaging. this is a mind-blowing 4.2 billion people. Teenagers form the largest share of text message users, and this has created concern for parents, teachers, and linguists who claim that texting has affected the student’s schoolwork. In the United States, teachers are of the belief that students are making countless mistakes in essays and other writing assignments because of the abbreviation language style common in text messages. Pew Internet and the American Life Project found in their survey that sixty-four percent of teenagers have admitted to using some text messaging abbreviation style in academic writing (Coe and Oakhill).
Texting has positive and adverse impacts on the literacy skills of students. Educators claim that texting has adverse effects on the writing skills of their pupils. The issue of text messaging on teen literacy has received a lot of attention over the years. It is now common that “textisms” have adverse effects on teenage literacy, but some studies have shown that they have positive effects depending on the situation they are employed in. With much of the media attention being directed on the adverse impact of texting, some studies have shown that texting has positive effects on the students. One study showed that the more the abbreviated words were in use, the more the verbal reasoning tended to be. The study showed a clear relation between textism and verbal reasoning. Another study conducted on British students revealed that proficient literacy skills were used to decipher text messages. this shows that text messaging is leading to the development of literacy skills in teenagers. According to Drouin and Davis, text messages are associated with emoticons, acronyms and removing excess grammar and spelling parts.