Likewise, there is no evidence that texting teaches people to spell badly: rather, research shows that those kids who text frequently are more likely to be the most literate and the best spellers, because you have to know how to manipulate language.
English has been this vacuum cleaner of a language, because of its history meeting up with the Romans and then the Danes, the Vikings and then the French and then the Renaissance with all the Latin and Greek and Hebrew in the background.
A community, once it realises that its language is in danger, can get its act together and introduce measures which can genuinely revitalise. You've seen it happen in Australia with several Aboriginal languages. And it's happening in other countries, too.
When we look at the specific effect of the Internet on language, languages asking the question, 'Has English become a different language as a result of the Internet?' the answer has to be no.
Ever since the arrival of printing - thought to be the invention of the devil because it would put false opinions into people's minds - people have been arguing that new technology would have disastrous consequences for language.
The Internet has given us 10 or 15 new styles of communication: long messages like blogging, and then short messages like texting and tweeting. I see it all as part of an expanding array of linguistic possibilities.
Academics don't normally manage to alter people's way of thinking through their strength of argument.
Word books traditionally focus on unusual and quirky items. They tend to ignore the words that provide the skeleton of the language, without which it would fall apart, such as 'and' and 'what,' or words that provide structure to our conversation, such as 'hello.'
Language has no independent existence apart from the people who use it. It is not an end in itself; it is a means to an end of understanding who you are and what society is like.
At any one time language is a kaleidoscope of styles, genres and dialects.
Text messaging is just the most recent focus of people's anxiety; what people are really worried about is a new generation gaining control of what they see as their language.
People say that text messaging is a new language and that people are filling texts with abbreviations - but when you actually analyse it, you find they're not.
'Spell it Out' rose to be number 4 on the best-selling Amazon chart - ahead of 'Fifty Shades of Grey!' Who ever would have thought that spelling would one day beat sex - even if it was for only a few hours!
Although many texters enjoy breaking linguistic rules, they also know they need to be understood.
Spellings are made by people. Dictionaries eventually reflect popular choices. And the Internet is allowing more people to influence spelling than ever before.
Texting has added a new dimension to language use, but its long-term impact is negligible. It is not a disaster.
Over the last 50 years or so, we have seen an increasing cultural diversification across the country. Accents are a reflection of society, and as society changes, so accents change.
People are very ready to criticize other people's accents. There's no correlation between accents and intelligence or accents and criminality, but people do make judgments.
In Cardiff, I've heard a number of accent mixes that weren't previously heard before such as Cardiff-Arabic and Cardiff-Hindi. This pattern is repeating itself in many urban communities across the U.K.; people are especially keen to develop a strong sense of local identity.
Everybody wants to say who they are and where they're from. And the easiest and cheapest and most universal way of doing that is through their accent.
There is no such thing as an ugly accent, like there's no such thing as an ugly flower.