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Dermot Report 21 Aug 2017 09:38

A worrying report in a national newspaper today warns that children will be illiterate within a generation as a result of the devastating impact of Twitter.

'Within twenty years, we will have children who cannot read & do not want to read'. :-0


Kense Report 21 Aug 2017 09:56

I thought you had to be able to read to make use of Twitter.


Dermot Report 21 Aug 2017 10:15

Ah Kense - you're too logical for me at this time of day.

I had always understood that it was not possible to derive a rule for reading from logical principles, most certainly in our beloved English. :-S


RolloTheRed Report 21 Aug 2017 13:17

As far as I can tell the Snail Sun Blue Xpress Ukip have already demonstrated the potential of illiteracy while David Davis has completely blind sided M Barnier with it by not bringing any paperwork to meetings. As a result DD is able to keep meetings down to 20 min and announce their great success.

The young have invented a new language thanks to the mobile phone. Sadly as robots take over eg Siri text will fade away.

Only the CCP is afraid of literacy.
Stat for the day Fahrenheit 451


GlasgowLass Report 21 Aug 2017 15:04

just 2 weeks ago at work, I was talking to a young lad of about 19yrs.
We were discussing social media and how some people make cringeworthy posts

I mentioned my pet hate that I get regularly on personal greetings
"Hi, how are yous"
sometimes even "youse"

He thought for a moment before admitting that he didn't know which one was correct


Caroline Report 21 Aug 2017 15:19

Being able to read and wanting to read is not the same obviously. Don't forget they'll also not be able to write, how many can even sign their name these days?


RolloTheRed Report 21 Aug 2017 15:50

Even if you can write your name the little gadgets carrird by the "signed for" crowd won't let you.

The office of David Davis has made keeping the innumeracy and illiteracy of his govt confidential a top demand on Brussels. Quite how this can be done by an organisation as leaky as the Jumblies sieve is not explained.

I once thought brexit would collapse in anger and tears. Quite wrong it will collapse in a welter of non sequiters and embarassment.

Hey ho


JoyLouise Report 21 Aug 2017 16:42

Ts t'way u tell it, Dermot. It crx me up! :-0 ;-) :-D


RolloTheRed Report 21 Aug 2017 17:22

Dermot all languages can be subject to semantic analysis and a rules framework derived from that using A.I. English being no exception. There is plenty of very good real time voice translation around which is why the EU and U.N. have not created massive demand for human translation.

Computer translation is pretty useless at humour and sound color though it is OK at bad language.


InspectorGreenPen Report 21 Aug 2017 17:24

It has been going downhill for decades so nothing new here at all.

30 years ago we were recruiting some 200 office staff and struggled to find any with a modicum of numeracy or literacy skills.

And this was from those who had GCSE qualifications of C's and B's. Those with A's were hardly much better.


RolloTheRed Report 21 Aug 2017 18:18

Thirty years ago anybody with a decent set of Gce A level would have been off to uni not mucking about with a low level office job.

Despite rumours to the contrary there are lots and lots of very bright young Brits. The big problem for employers is how to recruit and retain them. Brexit has put off a lot of EU people while native Brits are being lured away so it is getting no easier.

As an example consider brexit. Ukgov is fasttracking its finest young minds for stuff such as code breaking, foreign trade deals and other urgent needs. Almost as soon as they are out of the egg they are away for 6 figure salaries. Football managers understand the problem.


Dermot Report 21 Aug 2017 18:25

Any truth in the rumour highlighted in 'The Times' a few years ago that immigrants coming into Britain were often better qualified for work than the local population with many going on to outperform in higher education?


Guinevere Report 21 Aug 2017 19:27



RolloTheRed Report 21 Aug 2017 20:00


The UK ( Inc Scotland) has a very much oversubscribed top notch education system from 3 to around 25( allowing for post grads, medical etc) which catches at most 20% of the country.

The rest varies from really poor primary schools to mediocre comprehensive schools and unis. See Tom Sharpe "Porterhouse Blue".

Other than to say a lot of it is not fit for purpose there are no generalisations that fit. Despite poor salariƩs, multi ethnic and low incomes for many London easily out performs the rest of the country. There is a growing gap between the Englands north and south of the Trent. Some new unis are on a roll eg Bournemouth others not.

There are 1001 explanations for this. In the end the result is far too many losers whose opportunities are nil thanks to poor education and a lot of skilled foreigners brought in to fill the gaps. Hence brexit which cannot improve any of the problems but is certain to make them worse.


RolloTheRed Report 23 Aug 2017 17:56

ASDA stores has withdrawn 10000 "bags for life" specially printed for its new store at Newport, "Isle of White".



Dermot Report 24 Aug 2017 13:36

Sounds like a washing powder or a toothpaste advert - 'Whiter than Wight'.


RolloTheRed Report 24 Aug 2017 14:05



Mayfield Report 24 Aug 2017 17:53

Nuffink surprises me innit, know what I mean like! :-(


maggiewinchester Report 26 Aug 2017 00:57

Recent illiteracy will be the result of changes to the National Curriculum, where children are taught to read by phonics alone - not suitable for every child, and the increase in pupils per class makes things worse.
Having watched a TV programme about the current way to teach reading, I was horrified.
No fun, just explanations of adverbs, verbs, and things I didn't recognise.
Helping my grandsons with their English homework, is excruciating.
Fortunately, they could both read before starting school, so, to them, the two aren't linked, but if what they endure now is a child's first foray into reading - it's enough to put a person off.

Those given kindles instead of 'real' books, are also at a disadvantage.
You can't sit on a kindle or cuddle it. You have to be careful not to drop it off the side of the bed when you fall asleep, it doesn't fill the bookshelves with brightly coloured spines you can arrange by colour, or alphabetically.
You can't arrange the types of books, your favourite first on the bookshelf.
You can't proudly display the books you have read, and those you have lined up to read.
There's also the fact that illiterate parents don't have the ability to help their children, so today's illiteracy may be the result of education 30 odd years ago.
One couple with no love of reading or illiteracy may have 4 children, which immediately doubles the illiteracy numbers of the current generation of schoolchildren.

Having read Porterhouse Blue, not so much about illiteracy, more a social satire on life in a Cambridge College, but I suppose, we should thank Rollo for yet again , his 'suggested reading', even if it is off point, for us poor illiterates.
Having read all of his books, I'm not sure Tom Sharpe did any books that focussed on illiteracy. Quite a few were satires of the British Public School system, and apartheid.
Certainly didn't come up in the 'illiteracy' part of my degree in Education Studies, but were probably mentioned in the farce of elitism for the privileged few :-D


Dermot Report 6 Nov 2017 11:07

And now for some uplifting news.

Mark Goodliffe, a Chartered Accountant, recently won the annual Times crossword championship - this being his 11th success.