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“In this age of electronic communications such as cell phones, text messaging, and e-mail, what is the role of formal writing? How do you think these digital communication methods influence the writing process?”

The role of formal writing is to spread reliable and relevant information to people.  The information spread can relate to personal or professional use.  For example, a magazine article describing why red palm oil is healthy would be a form of formal writing for personal use while a journal article about the human genome might be considered formal writing for professional use.  Formal writing can also be used for communicating with strangers in a corporation, such as in a business letter.

Digital communication methods have both positively and negatively influenced the writing process.  They have positively influenced it because of the convenience of writing and formatting.  Most digital communication includes a spell check and grammar check operations.  They also make it easy for a section of text to be deleted or rewritten.  Unfortunately, digital communication has also negatively influenced writing.  Some people have difficulty producing a paper that has not been plagiarized.  Also, people are less likely to proofread what they have written.  This allows grammar mistakes to occur more frequently.  In addition, people use texting language when writing papers.  They will use “u” for “you” or drop the vowels in their writing.  As they do this, people begin to loss some of their formal writing ability.  Then their writing becomes harder to decipher, and they being to lose credibility when communicating through papers.  Finally, many people assume that text message and e-mail language displays a lack of education.

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