Interesting Wired article by Clive Thompson about how young people actually still know how to write (and are pretty good at it at that). This from a Stanford University study run by a professor there named Andrea Lunsford:
The first thing she found is that young people today write far more than any generation before them. That’s because so much socializing takes place online, and it almost always involves text. Of all the writing that the Stanford students did, a stunning 38 percent of it took place out of the classroom–life writing, as Lunsford calls it. Those Twitter updates and lists of 25 things about yourself add up.
The article also goes on to explain that these students are actually good writers, as judged by their ability to adapt to their audience. I was actually thinking about this yesterday as I was drafting up a blog post for The Barbarian Group blog. I started off my career writing for a magazine and since I left the world of writing on a daily basis (at least for pay) I feel as though my skills have only increased. It’s sort of a crazy thing. The other interesting epiphany I had while writing the post was that I actually do my best thinking while writing, which I’m not sure is actually a new thing. I find the act of explaining my thinking takes me much further than just going through things in my head.