Social Media’s Influence on Language Use: A Sociological Perspective on "Social Media Language" as a Communication Phenomenon among College Students in Ruteng, Flores

Ans Prawati Yuliantari

Abstract

Social media has made certain impacts on written communication among college students. It is interesting that there seems to be a sense of freedom of self-expression in their use of “social media language.” The purpose of this study is to look at some phenomena indicating the occurrence of newly created words and expressions in the way college students in Ruteng, East Nusa Tenggara, use “social media language” in their online communication.

Based on those phenomenon, the research questions that the present study intend to address are: Firstly, what words and expressions have college students in Ruteng recently invented? Secondly, why did they create new words and expressions to communicate in social media? A sociological approach is used in the analysis the aforesaid occurrences among the student subjects of this study.

The results of the study indicate that the creation of new words and expressions in the students’ use of social media language is largely motivated by the need to express their feelings more freely, and their use of new words and expressions they have created themselves is an act of self-defining their identity as an attempt to set themselves apart from other social groups. Based on the previously mentioned findings, it can be inferred that the use of certain “social media language” among the college students in Ruteng is the implication of the easy access to the Internet in Ruteng. More than that, the need of belonging to a particular group of young people with distinctive identity that is recognizable by their use of specific invented words and expressions.

Keywords

social media language; college students; Ruteng Flores

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