Does IM Make U Dum?

April 10, 2009
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I came across a funny, informative article by Martha Brockenbrough on MSN’s Encarta that asked – Does IM Make U Dum? There are a couple great points made in the article – first, is that we all abbreviate and use contractions. The second is that everything has a place and time…

To illustrate the second point, she asks you to imagine a guy in a Speedo standing in a public place. Odds are that someone is going to say something to him, but if the same guy were standing next to a pool, he wouldn’t be out of place. IM can be thought of in the same manner, it’s perfectly natural to abbreviate or maybe make up words when you have a limited amount of characters or there are few keys on your phone. It’s less okay to allow the IM-speak to be your standard vocabulary (see the example that the English Professor received.)

IM has been used effectively in a number of ways; I attended a tradeshow session where a rescue-mortgage company helped the un-/ under-banked population. Their members could IM with CSRs and share sensitive information/ personal questions about their financial situation with anonymity.

Similar abbreviation rules apply with SMS; you have a limited amount of space to convey an imp


I came across a funny, informative article by Martha Brockenbrough on MSN’s Encarta that asked – Does IM Make U Dum? There are a couple great points made in the article – first, is that we all abbreviate and use contractions. The second is that everything has a place and time…

To illustrate the second point, she asks you to imagine a guy in a Speedo standing in a public place. Odds are that someone is going to say something to him, but if the same guy were standing next to a pool, he wouldn’t be out of place. IM can be thought of in the same manner, it’s perfectly natural to abbreviate or maybe make up words when you have a limited amount of characters or there are few keys on your phone. It’s less okay to allow the IM-speak to be your standard vocabulary (see the example that the English Professor received.)

IM has been used effectively in a number of ways; I attended a tradeshow session where a rescue-mortgage company helped the un-/ under-banked population. Their members could IM with CSRs and share sensitive information/ personal questions about their financial situation with anonymity.

Similar abbreviation rules apply with SMS; you have a limited amount of space to convey an important offer or message. So figure out where and what to abbreviate… cuz it wud be bad 2 IM in EM!

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