OPINION24 March 2010

Keeping up with changing language online

Rosie Campbell of Campbell Keegan made a strong argument in her paper at Research 2010 this morning for better analysis of online language.

Rosie Campbell of Campbell Keegan made a strong argument in her paper at Research 2010 this morning for better analysis of online language. Displaying a screenshot from her daughter’s Facebook page, replete with expressions and cultural references that would be meaningless to most people over the age of 15, Campbell argued that txtspk and the language used by young people in social networks is badly in need of more study.

Automated language analysis tools are just about getting to grips with ‘normal’ discourse, but are lost when it comes to the bewildering, ever-changing colloquial language of the internet, she argued.

“I think we’re getting a huge amount of data and not looking nearly well enough at the words,” Campbell said. 

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