Intraference, linguistic symbols, textese, e-mailese, technomechanical, Educated Nigerian English.
This paper examines how senders of text messages and informal e-mail redeploy linguistic symbols innovatively to communicate. Even a cursory look at an SMS text (textese) and informal e-mail (e-mailese) will show that its style is different from that of formal writing. Two thousand twenty text messages and five hundred informal e-mail were studied from June 2004 to May 2013 to establish how linguistic symbols intrafere; that is, how they are taken from their known and established areas of application and redeployed in text messages and e-mails, where they are not formally used. The texts and e-mails were analysed against the backdrop of formal English writing rules and items. The study, which is historical and descriptive, shows that senders creatively redeploy the extant writing signs and rules of English in new ways and environments; hence, the habit is conceptualised as the intraference of linguistic symbols and rules. Intraference is the redeployment of linguistic rules and features from where they have been established by usage to other areas in the same language where they did not used to apply. The paper asserts that the methods of SMS and e-mail will not ruin effective communication in English. Rather, the methods display a new interesting variety according to a “techno-linguistic” dimension. This variety refers to the creative redeployment of extant language rules and items as constrained by the dynamics of technological or mechanical devices, which should be isolated and taught as such in Standard English, or Educated Nigerian English in this case.
Bode Ekundayo, O. S. (2014). Linguistic Symbol Intraference in Textese and E-mailese: Implications for Teaching and Learning Standard English. GIST – Education and Learning Research Journal, (9), 124-141. https://doi.org/10.26817/16925777.147