Changing your writing style

Things that don't belong anywhere else. (Check first).

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

If you were chatting with strangers and their writing style was different from yours, do you change?

Yes, completely.
No votes
Yes, taking some of their habits.
Sort of, I'll alternate between my style and some of theirs.
No, screw that.
Total votes: 47

User avatar
Posts: 3491
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 7:11 pm UTC
Location: Land of Hipsters and Rain (LOHAR)

Changing your writing style

Postby Magnanimous » Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:48 am UTC

Note: I thought about putting this in Language/Linguistics, but thought it was a little ambiguous.

I'm fairly in tune with grammatical style and whatnot, and I tend to write formally even in text messages and IRC. (Though in IRC I'll tend to drop periods) It's how most of my friends type, and has been for a long time. if I'm around (virtually speaking) people who type more casually though, Ill usually start subconsciously dropping capitals and punctuation to sort of match them... Recently I've been doing it mostly on minecraft servers and certain IRC channels.

... So if you're in an informal chat place and people are using a different style than you, do you change at all? If you don't use emoticons but they do, do you copy them? If you use chat abbreviations and they don't, do you stop?

User avatar
Posts: 898
Joined: Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:20 am UTC
Location: Ontario

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby lutzj » Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:39 am UTC

A girlfriend got me to change from

Code: Select all

 :) :( :D


Code: Select all

c: :c  C:

in texts and online messages just by using them so much.

My online writing style has become more formal in all contexts since I started posting on these boards and a poetry forum at about the same time a while ago. I only really drop the formality in text messages (because my phone capitalizes and punctuates for me c: ) and during an online videogame where I want to spend as little time typing as possible and avoid hitting too many keys.
addams wrote:I'm not a bot.
That is what a bot would type.

User avatar
Has suggestions for the murderers out there.
Posts: 2043
Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2011 5:18 am UTC

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Deva » Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:41 am UTC

Remains constant. Prefers this style.

Was that too shocking? Were there any jaw injuries?
Changes its form depending on the observer.

User avatar
My Little Cabbage
Posts: 2135
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2012 12:46 am UTC
Location: Vancouver BC

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby ahammel » Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:58 am UTC

I do this to some extent on the internet, but all the freakin' time in real life. When I'm talking to people who speak English as a second language I'll often pick up a lot of their non-idiomatic turns of phrase ("if I remember well" instead of "if I remember correctly", for example).

I hope nobody thinks I'm making fun of them.
God damn these electric sex pants!

Sheikh al-Majaneen
Name Checks Out On Time, Tips Chambermaid
Posts: 1075
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 5:17 am UTC

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:47 am UTC

When I speak with people with strong accents without aspiration, I tend to stop aspirating unvoiced consonants and talk 66%+ faster. Similar to ahammel, I hope Indian immigrants don't think I'm making fun of them...I know other people think I am. But it is unconscious.

User avatar
Posts: 49
Joined: Thu May 19, 2011 10:20 am UTC
Location: Wales,UK

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby TheMaskedGecko » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:20 am UTC

I find that I do the complete opposite: the more informal the other people's style is, the more hypercorrect I become. Probably some sort of weird British superiority complex going on there.
The one that annoys me is twitter. I twItch everytime I have to write 'u' as a second person pronoun, but the arbitrary word limitation forces me.
ConMan wrote:the neighbourhood’s favourite lizard

Yeah, I don't care if it's out of context, it massages my ego and so it stays.

User avatar
Giant Speck
Bouncy Sex Marshmallow
Posts: 3819
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 12:30 pm UTC
Location: Tucson, Arizona

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Giant Speck » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:28 am UTC

"Did I say recently that I love Giant Speck? Because I love Giant Speck. He is the best." - Weeks

User avatar
Shepherd's Pie?
Posts: 1690
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2008 11:56 am UTC
Location: Beacon Alpha

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby ConMan » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:21 pm UTC

My writing style is incredibly susceptible to outside influence. But it isn't restricted to certain areas, it tends to carry across in general. There are a lot of phrases that I've picked up over the years from various people, and possibly more interesting my handwriting has had a few major shifts, particularly due to certain maths professors. Since I started university, I now write my zs and 7s with cross-bars, put a flick and sometimes an under-bar on my 1s, and my ps tend to have a tall part at the top (and the round part will often not be properly closed to allow me to link them to the next letter).
pollywog wrote:
Wikihow wrote:* Smile a lot! Give a gay girl a knowing "Hey, I'm a lesbian too!" smile.
I want to learn this smile, perfect it, and then go around smiling at lesbians and freaking them out.

User avatar
Sean Quixote
Posts: 229
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 1:20 am UTC
Location: Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Sean Quixote » Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:36 pm UTC

I usually almost always follow all of the grammar and punctuation and spellings that I'm familiar with when I'm posting on this or any other forum. Texting and chat though, I'm very slightly more relaxed with it. But here lately ever since I got my smartphone, its auto-correcting feature has been adding most of my apostrophes for me - it even (sometimes) knows to capitalize the first word of a sentence....

User avatar
Posts: 18686
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2007 3:55 pm UTC
Location: There may be lovelier lovelies...

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:09 pm UTC

Playing online MMOs, one... encounters... people with a range of... abilities... at least insofar as it pertains to communication.

I will not butcher my ability to communicate to blend in. I will at WORST, at absolute worst, 'must get idea out ASAP', resort to shorthand.
"Be sure to target by the numbers and maintain speed, call if webbed or out of rep range" might become "Target by numbers, keep speed up, call if webbed".

Once, at my lowest, I didn't capitalize after a period.

That said, however, I have a few conversational tics that I picked up from people over the years, but they're all hand gestures and such.b
... with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.

User avatar
Posts: 366
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:20 am UTC
Location: Green Bay, WI

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby lucrezaborgia » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:30 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:I will not butcher my ability to communicate to blend in. I will at WORST, at absolute worst, 'must get idea out ASAP', resort to shorthand.

Me either. Funny enough, my friends who I meet IRL who first know me online for a period of time all comment that I speak exactly as I type.

User avatar
Apparently Anonymous
Posts: 438
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:17 pm UTC
Location: The blogosphere

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Apparently Anonymous » Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:25 am UTC

I don't change the way I speak at all (in my native language, in English I sometimes switch from British to American or some ESL accent so that it'll be easier for others to understand), but in online conversations I definitely do. I used to always user proper capitalization and punctuation, but in the past couple of years I've started adapting a bit to whomever I'm speaking to, occasionally writing without capital letters and periods.

Apart from that, I'll also use different/no smileys depending on how/if the other person uses them (sometimes I find this problematic though - sometimes smileys look silly/out of place if the conversation partner never uses them, but I'm not always sure how to let the other person know I'm joking/not being grumpy etc.).

How much I adapt depends a lot on whether or not I like the other person's writing style, though. If somebody is using typical "chat language" like u, r (I used to have no tolerance for this, but have gotten better over the years), I definitely won't follow. In other cases, when I like the way the other person is typing, I may type almost exactly like they do.

User avatar
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:36 pm UTC
Location: The Milkyway

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Gear » Wed Feb 22, 2012 7:51 pm UTC

Hmmm . . . my writing style does tend to change somewhat when I'm chatting with people/writing in forums/etc. but not so much in the way that other people seem to be indicating (losing grammar, picking up shorthand, etc.) but more like I'll find myself using phrases that they use a lot. Also, it's subconscious rather than 'blending in with the crowd', if that makes sense.
“What fun is it being cool if you can't wear a sombrero?”
~Calvin and Hobbes

User avatar
You, sir, name?
Posts: 6983
Joined: Sun Apr 22, 2007 10:07 am UTC
Location: Chako Paul City

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby You, sir, name? » Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:16 pm UTC

I always capitalize and punctuate regardless of what others do. It's like always wearing a suit and making others look like bums in their T-shirt with pizza stains.

I guess I may use smilies when other people use them, or in informal circumstances, but only in text, and only :-), :D and D:
Last edited by You, sir, name? on Wed Feb 22, 2012 9:04 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
I edit my posts a lot and sometimes the words wrong order words appear in sentences get messed up.

User avatar
An der schönen blauen Donau
Posts: 900
Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2007 5:14 am UTC

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby bluebambue » Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:22 pm UTC

I tend to write fairly formally, but with a decent amount of smileys. I use smileys when I feel like the words I used do not appropriately convey the tone I wish, but don't want to go through and change it.

I will write a bit more informally with a few uncapitalized letters and chat speak when talking to someone who uses that a lot.

In settings where smileys are normally accepted but the person I'm talking with doesn't use them, I will use them more sparingly.

User avatar
Has Been Touched
Posts: 2254
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 5:20 pm UTC
Location: Lost in Translation

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Kewangji » Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:43 pm UTC

Yeah, I'm much with the echoscriptia

(but not when I get self-conscious about my writing style like if someone points it out)

((then I just go back to the more formal of my default writing styles, which is the one I forumpost in usually)) :P
If you like my words sign up for my newsletter, Airport Tattoo Parlour:

The Great Hippo wrote:Nuclear bombs are like potato chips, you can't stop after just *one*

User avatar
Posts: 18686
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2007 3:55 pm UTC
Location: There may be lovelier lovelies...

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Feb 22, 2012 9:36 pm UTC

Kewangji wrote:Yeah, I'm much with the echoscriptia

... with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.

User avatar
Posts: 7548
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 4:16 am UTC
Location: spaceship somewhere out there

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby podbaydoor » Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:54 pm UTC


(Ditto, you provincial putz??)

Sorry, I just watched Blazing Saddles again. Anyway, sometimes I'll pick up nifty new smileys or colorful similes or metaphors. My writing style tends to change with my mood or whatever my speaking style is at the moment. I've picked up a fair amount of random phrases from various friends and SOs - "fair enough" is my favorite, I picked that up from an ex a couple years ago.
tenet |ˈtenit|
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

User avatar
Posts: 195
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 2:44 am UTC
Location: Badgerland

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby jawdisorder » Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:22 pm UTC

I always try to write as I would normally talk (with varying degrees of success) and generally use proper punctuation. The only time I ever really deviate is with someone who is noticeably drunk in their texts. It would probably make more sense to send them well written texts but it always just feels out of place.

User avatar
Posts: 459
Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 4:57 pm UTC

Re: Changing your writing style

Postby Kaiyas » Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:46 pm UTC

I adopt smilies and random expressions all the time, though usually with a twist; one of my friends uses :3 often, so I use =3 almost all the time now, because all my smilies have equal signs for eyes. However, how I actually write usually doesn't conform to anyone else's style.
clintonius wrote:This place is like mental masturbation

Return to “General”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 32 guests