Social media is a large term but mainly it’s about people communicating with each other online. Although there are some country or area specific differences in which are most popular social media services, the communities are more or less worldwide. Those language barriers that we have in the offline world aren’t the same as we have in the internet.
A person’s online language can be a lot different than his offline language. Technical terms, abbreviations and emoticons are mostly universal in online discussions. So it’s no surprise that the young online generation seems to enjoy high level on mutual understanding across the globe. Sometimes people are worried that SMS, instant messengers and other real-time communication tools are ruining the language. They forget that languages are always evolving and they’re never ready. Social media is a new communication channel and it has its own vocabulary.
Today we can easily follow people on social media or learn to know them through blogs. By interacting with other people, we constantly learn how they communicate all around the world. We are all adopters and influencers: I learn from you and you learn from me. The learning process involves finding a common language and a suitable communication style. Language rules or grammar don’t have much impact on the process.
In social media languages are influenced by other languages. As a result, our online languages start to have similarities and language barriers become smaller. However, those barriers will never disappear. Even social media won’t be able to create a real lingua franca.
When we want it, the language can be a separator, a thing that helps us find our own group of people. Similarly, the language can also be a unifier that brings us closer to the mass and creates the feeling of togetherness. Social media teach us to be masters in readjusting our use of languages. It’s hardly a bad thing.
Localize your social media apps and tools and enter new markets. Localization has been a key element in the success of Angry Birds and Facebook. With an advanced tool, the localization project is simple to execute. Learn more.