Are email and SMS forms of writing or speech? This question cannot be answered easily because their registers are hybrid; they make use of both orality and literacy. This book offers an accurate placement of emails and text messages along the written/spoken continuum. Emails and text messages are also compared to letters and phone calls while a closer comparison of SMS and telegrams shows how far text messaging can be regarded as a renaissance of telegrams. Attention is further paid to multimedia messaging and questions concerning the proportion of image to text, picture categories as well as MMS dialogues are approached. The book finally comments on linguistic changes and deals with the German language community’s concern with regard to the increasing use of Anglicisms.
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2008. 294 pp., num. fig. and tables
Contents: Private email and text messages (SMS): linguistic features of the involved written but conceptually oral language;
syntactic and lexical reductions; spelling tendencies and rules; emoticons – A comparison between single and linked SMS as
well as between SMS and telegrams – A discussion of Koch and Oesterreicher’s model; email and SMS dialogues; email and text
messages compared to letter mail and telephone conversation; gratification and media richness theory – MMS: proportion of
image to text, picture categories, MMS dialogues – Linguistic changes: new trends - old features; Anglicisms in (Swiss-)German
emails and text messages.