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From Hello to eL0w Ph0ouxZz~!!. Calay, J. R. E.

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John Reczon E. Calay 2013-18354 From Hello to eL0w Ph0ouxZz~!!: The Impact of the Jejemon Sub-culture to Philippine Language Friend 1: Friend 2: Hello, friend. How are you? 0k nm4n ph0w$zzZZ 4q < j3j3j3 =)) 1k~w ph0w$zzZZ mU$+4 k~?''

English 10 09 February 2014

Have you ever received this kind of text message from a friend? You were just asking if how is his/her day and he/she replies you that he/she is fine with an out-of-this world words constructed improperlyinappropriate capitalization of letters and use of numbers, confusing spellings, and wrong usage of punctuation marksand then asks you back. What would you feel? Would you text him/her back? Technology improves communication. Platforms such as cellphones and social media made this happen, and the Philippines did not get left behind. The Philippines was hailed as the country that has sent more text messages, per capita, than others. According to Mark Fullmer, texting has brought a new variety in spelling, countless acronyms, and ever-evolving symbols (2010), and this change in texting became a trend in the Filipino youth. As a part of this Filipino generation, I would say that its members are too liberated on the language (i.e., syntax and spelling) that he/she is using when communicating with other people either via text messaging or social media. Having

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freedom to such traditional attitudes because of technologys offer to , the youth nowadays use a different style of inputting characters in their messages; making a new way to change the conventional way of formal messaging. One noted group of people who do this are the so-called jejemons. A jejemon, as defined by Urban Dictionary, a web-based dictionary on pop culture, is basically anyone with a low tolerance in correct punctuation, syntax and grammar (Jejemon [Def. 3], n.d.). This word came from jeje, the substitute word for the hehe laugh in text messaging and -mon which is derived from the popular cartoon Pokmon (abs-cbnNEWS.com, 2010). Jejemons are sub-cultures, according from the findings of Joseph Rick Cataan. Jejemon Sub-culture is an other culture. This culture is alienated through the use of stereotypes such as their fashion and way of communicating. We can find them anywhere, but they dominated the virtual and telecommunications world. If you ask a person about how he/she define on his/her own words a jejemon, majority of them would agree to answer nakakairita sila because of their so-called languagethe jejenese (2011). I assert that the Jejenese language is a threat to the development and enrichment of the Filipino language as our Constitution promulgates. The 1987 Philippine Constitution states that Filipino, the national language of the Philippines shall be further developed and enriched, as it evolves (Phil. Const. art. XIV, 6). However, it is ironic that the national language of the country was dubbed by its people as mahirap

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and malalim. Another thing, the word jejemon was the Word of the Year of the Philippines in the year 2010 (abs-cbnNEWS.com, 2010). In this connection, I conducted a case study at Rizal National Science High School in Binangonan, Rizal (my alma mater) last 03 February 2014 to measure a students capability to (1) translate Jejenese words and sentences to Standard English words and to (2) translate Standard English words to (Old) Filipino or Tagalog words. Out of the 92 Grade 7 respondents, 95.65% passed the first test. On the other hand, 33.7% of the students passed the second test. The result is quite alarming because it is observed that the students easily got a high score in the Jejenese translation test than the test about his/her mother tongue.
10 8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 Male Female 20 15 10 5 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 Male Female

Figure 1. A clustered column graph showing the difference between the results of (left graph) the (Old) Filipino Translation and (right graph) Jejenese Translation test. Out of 92 Grade 7 respondents of the Rizal National Science High School (41 males and 51 females), 33.7% (31 students) passed the (Old) 20-item Filipino Translation test, while 95.65% (88 students) passed the 15-item Jejenese translation test. This case study was conducted 03 February 2014.

That is why the Department of Education (DepEd) last 2011 campaigned to discontinue the use of the Jejemon language, because this might cause deterioration of the language skills of the students; simply by encouraging the students to send text messages with properly spelled words (GMA News Online, 2010).

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For me, it is really important to value our language. Our national language Filipino and numerous dialectsreflects our culture. I am frightened that the wonderful and magnificent Filipino language will be killed (softly) because of this linguistic liberalization. As said by my Linguistics 1 (Ling 1) professor, Ricardo Ma. D. Nolasco in his column, we will never be able to develop our languages for higher thinking unless we begin basic literacy and education in them [students]. (Nolasco, 2009) Some students find out that the jejemons way of communicating is cool and is trending, thats why they adapt it to their system. Basic literacy on the Filipino language must be taught to students to appreciate and to value the importance of the language theyve grown up to. In the next years, my assertions could possibly be rejected and ignored. We are not aware of what would happen in the future. Will the Filipino language die? I dont know and I hope it will not. Will the Jejenese language be developed in the next years? I also dont know; but probably in the future, Lourd De Veyras assertion about jejemons could perhaps happen. One day, out of all the chaos, someone from the jejemonic ranks will earn a goddamned PhD in linguistics and creative writing and make sense of it all. One day, the jejemons of today will be dancing on our graves, and laughing at the primitiveness of our tongues. (De Veyra, 2010) Nope. Were both just kidding.

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REFERENCES abs-cbnNEWS.com. (2010, August 02). Jejemon beats Ondoy as word of the year. abs-cbn News Online. Retrieved from http://www.abscbnnews.com/lifestyle/youth/08/02/10/jejemon-beats-ondoy-word-year

Cataan, J. C. (2011). A world within the world: The Jejemons as the other culture. Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis. University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication, Diliman, Quezon City

De Veyra, L. (2010, April 29). This is a crazy planets: Attack, Jejemons, attack! Spot.ph Retrieved 09 February 2014 from http://www.spot.ph/blog/42276/lourd-de-veyraattack-jejemons-attack/1

Fullmer, M. (2010). Literacy in the Facebook era: A pedagogical approach to Internet English and Filipino education. Unpublished manuscript, Eastern Visayas State University, Tacloban City, Leyte. Retrieved from http://waraylanguage.org/literacy-facebook-era.pdf

GMA News Online (2010, May 22). DepEd seeks to purge schools of Jejemon mentality. GMA News Online. Retrieved 09 February 2014 from

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http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/191566/news/nation/deped-seeks-topurge-schools-of-jejemon-mentality

Jejemon [Def. 3]. (n.d.). In Urban Dictionary, Retrieved 09 February 2014, from http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=jejemon

Nolasco, R. M. D. (2009, June 13). Intellectualizing a language. Philippine Daily Inquirer: Inquirer Opinion/Columns. Retrieevd from http://opinion.inquirer.net/inquireropinion/columns/view/20090613210240/Intellectualizing-a-language

The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines.