Writing in a Digital Environment
Cod: 51204
Department: DH
Scientific area: Linguistics
Total working hours: 156
Total contact time: 15

The compulsion and omnipresence of writing in our daily lives should lead us to a broad reflection. Written language is no longer the high temple of Western society with its attributes of elaborate sentences, correct grammar and spelling. It has become oralised, when it is visualised either on the computer screen, or on that of the mobile phone.
Digital writing adopts an informal style. Undoubtedly, the digital medium is bringing about a revolution in cultures and civilisations. Time, space and identity are continuously and profoundly reshaped.
Moving from the typographic domain to digital writing implies a change in relation to theory, insofar as we realise that between theory and reality there is both continuity and separation.
Are digital written forms asynchronous, instantaneous, disposable, ephemeral forms?
In a first moment of this UC, a contextualisation of digital communication will be carried out, highlighting some relevant aspects, trying to understand the evolution, conversion, transformation and innovation that arise from the digital medium.
Subsequently, a reflection on writing as a system and as a social practice is carried out, highlighting the evolution of media and instruments.
In a third moment, the textual genres emerging in the digital context will be characterised.
Finally, the specificities of writing in a digital environment will be addressed, with the main emphasis on consonant writing, multiple and expressive punctuation, the presence of emojis, the (dis)respect for spelling and typographic rules, graphic stretches, the presence of neologisms and neographs, syntactic simplification, contamination of orality marks, among other

Digital writing; digital genres; evolution and metamorphoses; linguistic-discursive features.

The following skills are to be acquired with this course:

- to understand the context of digital communication and its relevance today;
- to know the main stages in the evolution of writing as a system and as a social practice;
- to recognise emerging textual genres in a digital context by relating them to pre-existing ones;
- to learn the specificities of writing in a digital environment;
- to apply the knowledge acquired in the analysis of some texts.

The course programme will focus on the following topics:
I. Digital communication: conversion, transformation, innovation.
II. Writing as a system and as a social practice: evolution of media and tools.
III. Emerging textual genres in a digital context.
IV. Specificities of writing in a digital environment: linguistic-discursive aspects.
V. Applying theoretical knowledge to text analysis.

ANDROUTSOPOULOS, Jannis (2011). Language change and digital media: a review of conceptions and evidence, Kristiansen, Tore & Nikolas Coupland (eds.). Standard Languages and Language Standards in a Changing Europe. Oslo: Novus Press, pp. 145-159.
ANIS, Jacques (1998). Texte et ordinateur: l’écriture réinventée? Bruxelles: De Boeck Université.
ANIS, Jacques (dir.) (2001). Parlez-vous texto? Guide des nouveaux langages du reseau. Paris, Le Cherche Midi éditeur.
BARON, Naomi S. (2015). Words on screen. The fate of reading in a digital world. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
BARON, Naomi S. (2008).  Always on: language in an online and mobile world. Oxford:  Oxford University Press.
CASTELLS, Manuel (2004). The Internet Galaxy. Reflections on the Internet, Business and Society. Oxford, Oxford University Press, [2001](trad.) A Galáxia Internet. Reflexões sobre a Internet, Negócios e Sociedade. Lisboa, Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian.
CASTILLO GÓMEZ, Antonio (2004). Das tabuinhas ao hipertexto. Lisboa, Biblioteca Nacional, Ministério da Cultura.
CRYSTAL, David (2008). Txtng: The Gr8 Db8.  Oxford: Oxford University Press.
CRYSTAL, David [2001] Language and Internet. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press. Edição espanhola (2002), El language e Internet, Madrid, Cambridge University Press.
HERRING, Susan (org.). (2005), Computer-Mediated Conversation. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press.
HERRING, S. C.; Tein, D. & Virtanenm, (eds) (2013). Handbook of pragmatics of computer-mediated communication. Berlim: Mouton.
GOLDSMITH, Kenneth (2011) Uncreative Writing. Managing Language in the Digital Age. New York: Columbia University Press.


Continuous assessment is privileged: 2 digital written documents (e-folios) during the semester (40%) and a final digital test, Global e-folio (e-folio G) at the end of the semester (60%). In due time, students can alternatively choose to perform one final exam (100%).

Language of instruction: Portuguese. Students are required to have access to a computer with Internet connection.