Pretty soon "hello" and "goodbye" may become as passe as "ye" and "thou."
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive emails regarding relevant topic offers from TechTarget and its partners. You can withdraw your consent at any time. Contact TechTarget at 275 Grove Street, Newton, MA.
Electronic communications such as e-mail and instant messaging will have a tremendous effect on language over the next generation, a study commissioned by MSN's U.K. operation has found. While some stodgy traditionalists may lament the loosening of the lexicon, the study's author said standards change with time.
"We have a situation where more people use electronic communication than old-fashioned letters," said Jonathon Green, the lexicographer who wrote the study, according to the BBC's Web site. "The way these technologies work often results in us talking faster and with more slang."
For example, Net denizens are ditching "hello" for "hey," "howdy" or "yo." People take on an international flavor when parting ways, using "later," "ciao," "au revoir" and "hasta la vista."
"It wouldn't surprise me if, in 50 years, there was no longer a need for 'hello' and 'goodbye' in general or certainly in electronic communication," Green said.