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LINGUIST List 19.1037

Sat Mar 29 2008

Books: Philosophy of Language/Sociolinguistics/Pragmatics: Baron

Editor for this issue: Hannah Morales <hannahlinguistlist.org>

Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.
        1.    Elyse Turr, Always On: Baron

Message 1: Always On: Baron
Date: 27-Mar-2008
From: Elyse Turr <elyse.turroup.com>
Subject: Always On: Baron
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Title: Always On
Subtitle: Language in an Online and Mobile World
Published: 2008
Publisher: Oxford University Press

Author: Naomi S. Baron
Hardback: ISBN: 9780195313055 Pages: 304 Price: U.S. $ 29.95

In "Always On," Naomi S. Baron reveals that online and
mobile technologies-- including instant messaging, cell
phones, multitasking, Facebook, blogs, and wikis--are
profoundly influencing how we read and write, speak and
listen, but not in the ways we might suppose.

Baron draws on a decade of research to provide an
eye-opening look at language in an online and mobile world.
She reveals for instance that email, IM, and text messaging
have had surprisingly little impact on student writing.
Electronic media has magnified the laid-back "whatever"
attitude toward formal writing that young people everywhere
have embraced, but it is not a cause of it. A more troubling
trend, according to Baron, is the myriad ways in which we
block incoming IMs, camouflage ourselves on Facebook, and
use ring tones or caller ID to screen incoming calls on our
mobile phones. Our ability to decide who to talk to, she
argues, is likely to be among the most lasting influences
that information technology has upon the ways we communicate
with one another. Moreover, as more and more people are
"always on" one technology or another--whether
communicating, working, or just surfing the web or playing
games-- we have to ask what kind of people do we become, as
individuals and as family members or friends, if the
relationships we form must increasingly compete for our
attention with digital media?

Our 300-year-old written culture is on the verge of
redefinition, Baron notes. It's up to us to determine how
and when we use language technologies, and to weigh the
personal and social benefits--and costs--of being "always
on." This engaging and lucidly-crafted book gives us the
tools for taking on these challenges.

Linguistic Field(s): Philosophy of Language

Written In: English (eng )

See this book announcement on our website:

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