There are several other efficiencies used within text messaging. One
of the most prevalent is using a single letter to represent a whole
word, simply by the sound of the letter. The single letters used as
- for “be” and “bee”
- represents “see”
- is the shortened form of “okay”
- stands in for “and”
- is left from “oh”
- could be either “pea” or “pee”
- can mean “are” or “our”
- a regular exchange for pronoun “you”
- may be an “ex”
- for the inquisitive “why”.
Once more the texter’s language is defined by the economic
efficiency of putting just one letter to represent a whole word, and
also maybe shows a sign of laziness - choosing the easiest option.
Some single letters can be taken to represent other words due to
their links. For example, X is regularly used as meaning a
kiss, in a text message. Q often replaces the word
question, and Y/N is a quick way of saying “yes or no?”
W/ can even represent with.
Omitting vowels are common features of this form of communication.
Similarly to shorthand in journalism, whole passages can exist with
several excluded vowels. Here’s an example:
I hr tht we r gng out 2nt?
In this sentence, the e and a are missed out of
hear, a and e are missing from are,
going misses o and i, and tonight lacks an
i. To those unfamiliar with the SMS language on show, the
context is needed to make sense of the utterance. Vowel omitting
occurs in many words, such as could (cld), would
(wld), good (gd), and bad (bd).
In cases such as bd, the outcome could be one of four words -
bed, bid, bud or bad. The context is
necessary to affirm which meaning is being used. Once again, the
overriding need to economise is established.