I’m no linguist, but I know that language evolves. The way English is spoken and written today is clearly different from the ways in which it existed hundreds of years ago. The same is true for other languages. New words are sometimes introduced, while some words fall out of common use.
What makes any particular change in language acceptable? I don’t think it’s up to the dictionary. Not exactly. I think the use of a word or phrase reaches a tipping point.
There are already some words, phrases, and acronyms/abbreviations that have come into common use because of mobile phone text messaging. Not all of them seem like winners to me, but there’s one in particular I think I can defend.
If the word I use for myself is “I” – one single letter that is as clear as can be – why is it somehow wrong for the word I use for you to be, well, “U”. I know that a sea of the best literature, as well as letters, newspapers and magazines have been filled with the word “you” for as long as anyone alive today can remember. And for a lot longer than that. But so what? What if this is the moment in time where “you” transforms to “u” for all uses, and does so in a way in which it is just as acceptable in High School English class as it is in the text message my teenager sends to me?
You becomes U. Your becomes Ur. I suppose You’re becomes U’re. Maybe even U’r.
U mean the world to me. I love u. U are the sunshine of my life.
I think I’m already getting used to it. How about u?
Please post your comments and thoughts.