TextingBack in 2004, I was lucky enough to spend a year in Canada. At one point I was amazed to find that some of my Canadian friends didn’t know their mobile phones had a text messaging function.

Apparently that’s changed, and dramatically – the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association will announce this week that Canadians sent 35.3 billion texts in 2009, or around 122 million per day.

All this texting has given rise to a new set of words employing the suffix ‘ting’, including ‘drexting’ (drinking and texting) and ‘chexting’ (cheating on your partner via text). The most famous (or infamous perhaps) is ‘sexting’ – sending X-rated images, messages and video via your phone – partly due to one famous golfer.

These words are most likely fads and will die out as texting become less of a novelty. It’s good to know that they still have meaning, though:

Maria Bakardjieva, who studies the socio-cultural aspects of technology, says the implications of this trend cut both ways.

“We’re stronger and richer with every new medium that allows us to connect to others,” says Bakardjieva, a professor of communication and culture at the University of Calgary. “But with texting, we’re also brutalizing written language in order to communicate. Still, it demonstrates that humans can fill any message with meaning and utility, no matter how lean.” (Source: Vancouver Sun)