Short Cuts: The Curious Case of ‘Pol’ and My Take on Writing Proficiency Today

February 1, 2016

[skopein/ikon images/corbis]
[skopein/ikon images/corbis]

The other day, my 13-year-old daughter responded to my “thank you” text with “welx.”

I asked, “Is that tech-speak for ‘you’re welcome?’” She confirmed.

A day or two later, she shared another abbreviated word she actually made up: “polly,” for “I apologize.” Deemed still too long, she said it was shortened even more to just “pol.” While not widely known, her friends are familiar with the slang term and have adopted its use for themselves.

I imagine this is how new words are created, and sometimes even become popular enough to warrant inclusion into the dictionary, just as “sext” and “twerk” were added to the Oxford English Dictionary back in June. Some may argue whether or not this is a good thing, but there’s something more sinister lurking beneath this. In today’s fast-paced world of instant messages, text messages and social media, our youth are heading down a shortcut that may negatively impact their writing skills.

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