Dr Caroline Tagg, lecturer in Applied Linguistics, talks about her research into the way we use language in text messages and on social media sites, such as Facebook.

If you thought text messaging was simply about conveying your point quickly with a line of baffling acronyms, you'd be wrong. To the contrary, Caroline has discovered that people can actually be quite creative with their texts, often making them longer and more elaborate rather than shortening them.

Caroline also covers how we use emoticons to moderate and temper the content of our messages, answers the age-old question of whether 'text speak' is diluting the English language and is potentially damaging to children growing up in an age of mobile phones and social networks, and also explains how we use linguistic strategies to communicate with our audience of friends and acquaintances on Facebook.

Listen to the podcast (MP3 13.7MB)

Read a transcript of the podcast