Posts Tagged ‘language in social media’

Acceptable and Unacceptable Conventions of Language in SM

February 10, 2013 1 comment

Some of the acceptable conventions of grammar, mechanics, and punctuation seen in SM are the use of caps lock, HTML code, acronyms, and the marriage of punctuation marks to symbolize emotions and expressions. SM has a very casual approach towards the use of language and almost anything is acceptable. The use these stylistic choices is a reflection of a person’s attitudes and the message they are conveying. Generally speaking, we speak conversationally in the realm of SM because we treat the interactions as though we were face to face with the people we are conveying our message to.

These stylistic choices also depend on the writer, the message, the meaning, the intention, and the platform used. For instance, even though some consider LinkedIn to be SM, it wouldn’t be acceptable to use caps lock, acronyms like “LOL”, and smiley faces because the climate, purpose, and audience of the site is different than that of Facebook or Twitter.

Moreover, what’s appropriate for one entity isn’t appropriate for another. This is because we hold different people to different standards. For example, we would expect to see a wall post by one of our friends ending their sentence with a “ 🙂 “ if they were happy about something. This wouldn’t be as accepted if we saw a similar post by an organization like CNN for instance. If CNN was proud to announce something, they would typically end the sentence with an exclamation point.