Teens' text-messaging habits are legion. They send thousands upon thousands of texts per month, and every once in a while, some unfortunate parents make the headlines when they get a bill in the mail for thousands upon thousands of dollars in texting charges. The increasing use of text-messaging by teens--and increasingly often, by younger children--has given some people cause for concern. They argue that the abbreviations used in texting are detrimental to literacy development. Spelling, grammar, phrasing--these are all somehow poised to suffer, critics of texting contend, because of the use of shortened words and sentences. Soon, they predict, students'...

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