QWERTY murderer strikes: RIP Txt-Spk

QWERTY murderer strikes: RIP Text-SpeakIt is with much regret that we announce the violent death of Text-Speak, by the introduction of QWERTY keypads in this new, cruel and heartless generation of mobile communications.

That endearing, abbreviated form of written communication necessitated by the previous generations of cellphones has passed away to the great cybernet in the sky.

Txt-Spk, as it was affectionately known, grew out of earlier phones’ requirement to press a number button umpteen times in order to put up a letter.

That, combined with the ludicrous anticipatory text facility devised by the gnomes of Silicon Valley, obliged anyone with a brain to cut back on all but vital letters and numbers in text (SMS) messages.

O, how weel mss U!

It’s so sad to think that these curt, abbreviated abortions of the English (and other) languages are never to be seen again, purely because more recent gnomes in Silicon Valley and elsewhere have come up with smartphones that allow users to type whole messages in full, quickly, using QWERTY keyboards.

What a sad day for the burgeoning creativity that Txt-Spk spawned! Where can we go now to find all those imaginative, squeezed derivatives of common words and phrases that became such an important part of our lives?

Think ROFL … ROFLMAO … PMSL … LOL … PLZ … TIA … l8tr … CU … and hundreds more.
All confined to the garbage can of internet history.

Y? O Y?

Freedom! Liberation from the strictures of Txt-Spk, thanks to the evolution of these QWERTY keyboard options on smartphones! Or so you might think at least. But this may not necessarily be the case.

We spoke to (well, texted, actually) 17-year-old Wayne Grunt, a former Txt-Spk expert from Croydon, England, who has now moved up to an IPhone. What was his reaction to his new freedom to write easily, in full?

“FFS,” Wayne lamented, “ I cnt fckn spll so how d-fck cn I xprss mslf wit al dese lttrs to Uz?”

His girlfriend Chardonnay Slutte, also 17 and from Croydon, responded: “Ma GFs an me h8s doz lttrs. Y dz we nEds 2 wryt prprly? U gotta B tkn D pss.”

QWERTY: the merciless killer

Well, QWERTY, you have managed to infiltrate the entire domain of mobile communications now due to your keyboards’ incorporation into near-as-dammit every mobile device currently on the market.

Have you no shame?

Do you wish to annihilate Txt-Spk forever?

Because if that is the case, we are going to experience an even more ridiculous b*ggeration of the English language than Txt-Spk could even have dreamt of. How can you be so cruel as to expect users to learn how to spell, for Heaven’s sake?

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

QWERTY murderer strikes: RIP Text-SpeakThere aren’t many advantages to being on the wrong side of 50, but there is one : we learned touch-typing on typewriters.

Back in those dim dark ages of the 1970s, typewriters used almost exactly the same QWERTY keyboards modern mobile devices use now.

While newbies pick at the modern QWERTY keyboard looking for the letters, we old goats are in our element.

Revenge is sweet…

Now, let’s put some life into your writing…

“How To Write About Yourself”…how to make the most of yourself, whatever you need to write

“Business Writing Made Easy”…everything you need to know about writing for business in English

“How To Write Winning Non-fiction”…all you need to know to write a good non-fiction book and get it published


photo credit: Nina Matthews Photography via photopin cc
photo credit: Eric Fischer via photopin cc

Writing for mobile: words on the run?

Writing for mobile: words on the run?This is an area of considerable importance today and is a very, very long way from those geeky SMS/text messages of the “CU l8er” variety we’ve been used to for some years.

Because you can now surf the internet using your mobile device, business communicators are having to take another look … and rather a long, considered look … at how their websites and blogs translate on to what we old goats describe as gizmos smaller than cigarette packs on which we’re expected to read the entire content of the universe.

Word on the street is, many businesses are adopting an attitude of “let’s see if our main website works for mobile” … rather than rethinking their content and messages for a medium that is very different from the full-blown www. Experts are advising website owners to stop hoping that their websites will work on mobile devices because there is a very good chance that they won’t.

Take a good look at your website or blog on a mobile device

Being an utter Luddite I don’t have one of these fancy phones that allow you to surf the net – yet – so the other day I asked a friend to put up HowToWriteBetter.net on his touch phone to see how it looked in miniature.

Well, of course, I needed the reading glasses to see anything at all even though as he stroked the screen bigger and bigger images came up. And as HTWB.net is pretty straightforward with few frills, I wasn’t too disappointed in the result.

But what happens with sites – even blogsites – that are much more complex than mine?

I shudder to think. I know younger folks have good eyesight and these touchy-feely devices are able to magnify text to an extent where even I can read the text without glasses.

However, an alarmingly large number of websites and even blogs translate very poorly to mobile. And although it’s not really within my remit to comment on it, it’s worth flagging up and thinking about how your own site or blog works on the weenie-screens. As more and more people use their mobile devices to surf the net … and if you’re in business, potentially buy products and services via mobile devices … anyone with a site that turns into utter gibberish on a touchy-feely phone will stand to lose out in no uncertain terms. That’s something no-one can afford right now.

Writing for mobile: words on the run?And writing for mobile?

Well, until these mobile devices manage to implant a device in people’s brains which allow unlimited communication, you guessed it…

…brief, short, sharp and direct is what’s needed, especially when you’re squinting at such a small screen. Get your key messages over in plain language on your home page and make sure your site navigation is very easy and very simple.

As for audio and video on mobile?

Interesting … and especially with audio, could offer some exciting possibilities that could compensate for mobile’s – so far – visual limitations. I’m going to shut up about it now, but I certainly will be watching this space.

If you work with online mobile marketing, what are your thoughts on its future? Please share them with us if you can spare a moment or two!

Now, let’s mobilize your  words:

“Super Speeches”…how to write and deliver them well

“How To Write About Yourself”…how to make the most of yourself, whatever you need to write

“Business Writing Made Easy”…everything you need to know about writing for business in English


photo credit: Supreme_NKH via photopin cc
photo credit: danieljromanod38 via photopin cc