Use of English neologisms in social media: a case of twitter language in Kenya
This project investigated the use of English neologisms in social media using twitter in the Kenyan context. Driven by inadequacy of literature with regards to English neologisms in Kenyan social media: English neologisms that are used in Kenya and also internationally. The study looked into the word forming processes and gave examples of processes that social media neologisms undergo. The study guided by the objectives, aimed at determining how social media neologisms deviate from the use of Standard English using linguistic levels of analysis giving various examples. The study focused on the factors that lead to the production and usage of the social media neologisms. Finally the study focused on the effectiveness of social media neologisms in communication. Lexical pragmatics was used as the theoretical framework for this study due to its ability to explain how a hearer is able to understand the encoded concept of a word from the concept communicated; this was explained under the processes: lexical narrowing, lexical broadening and categorical extension. The study after the investigations found that: social media neologisms deviate from the standard use of Standard English at different levels explained through linguistic description, the deviation was found to be a way to easen communication amongst the online users. Factors such as age, gender, quickness in communication, meaning impact and avoidance of grammar and spelling conventions were identified as having contributed to the production of social media neologisms. Finally speed of communication, brevity time-sensitivity, ease of interpretation and exposure were amongst the elements used to affirm that social media neologisms are effective in communication.