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Always On : Language in an Online and Mobile World,9780199735440

Always On : Language in an Online and Mobile World

by
ISBN13:

9780199735440

ISBN10:
0199735441
Format:
Paperback
Pub. Date:
3/3/2010
Publisher(s):
Oxford University Press
List Price: $20.21

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  • Always On : Language in an Online and Mobile World
    Always On : Language in an Online and Mobile World




Summary

In Always On, Naomi S. Baron reveals that online and mobile technologies--including instant messaging, cell phones, multitasking, Facebook, blogs, and wikis--are profoundly influencing how we read and write, speak and listen, but not in the ways we might suppose. Baron draws on a decade of research to provide an eye-opening look at language in an online and mobile world. She reveals for instance that email, IM, and text messaging have had surprisingly little impact on student writing. Electronic media has magnified the laid-back "whatever" attitude toward formal writing that young people everywhere have embraced, but it is not a cause of it. A more troubling trend, according to Baron, is the myriad ways in which we block incoming IMs, camouflage ourselves on Facebook, and use ring tones or caller ID to screen incoming calls on our mobile phones. Our ability to decide who to talk to, she argues, is likely to be among the most lasting influences that information technology has upon the ways we communicate with one another. Moreover, as more and more people are "always on" one technology or another--whether communicating, working, or just surfing the web or playing games--we have to ask what kind of people do we become, as individuals and as family members or friends, if the relationships we form must increasingly compete for our attention with digital media? Our 300-year-old written culture is on the verge of redefinition, Baron notes. It's up to us to determine how and when we use language technologies, and to weigh the personal and social benefits--and costs--of being "always on." This engaging and lucidly-crafted book gives us the tools for taking on these challenges.

Author Biography


Naomi S. Baron is Professor of Linguistics at American University in Washington, DC. A leading authority on language use in the age of the computer, she has studied instant messaging, text messaging, mobile phone practices, multitasking behavior, and Facebook usage by American college students, along with cross-cultural mobile phone use. She is the author of six earlier books, including Alphabet to Email: How Written English Evolved and Where It's Heading. Baron has been interviewed in such media as Good Morning America, ABC News 20/20, CNN, the Diane Rehm Show, Fresh Air, PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, All Things Considered, Morning Edition, BBC, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and Wired Magazine.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Email to Your Brain: Language in an Online and Mobile Worldp. 3
Language Online: The Basicsp. 11
Controlling the Volume: Everyone a Language Czarp. 31
Are Instant Messages Speech?: The World of IMp. 45
My Best Day: Managing "Buddies" and "Friends"p. 71
Having Your Say: Blogs and Beyondp. 99
Going Mobile: Cell Phones in Contextp. 127
"Whatever": Is the Internet Destroying Language?p. 161
Gresham's Ghost: Challenges to Written Culturep. 183
The People We Become: The Cost of Being Always Onp. 213
Notesp. 237
Referencesp. 253
Indexp. 275
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.


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