No Güey, Spanish Social Media is a Language Unto Itself

Social media is the vehicle that carries much of our communication and culture across the internet nowadays. Unquestionably, its relevance to today’s society is irrefutable and its ability to be used across multiple languages is something to be studied. The focus of this article looks into whether social media influences Spanish speakers in their everyday use of Spanish like how popular trends across English social media does. This study observed popular trends in Spanish social media and slang often included in posts across popular platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter (X), and Instagram. Then, surveyed UCLA students and high school students discussed their use of social media and whether they use slang learned from social media in their everyday interactions. Respondents showed that while the slang and language they pick up does match what is often seen in social media, they instead stated that they primarily picked up new words from people they talk to often, like friends and family, not social media. Our findings suggest that while social media is a strongly influential phenomenon on individuals, for the Spanish speaker it is more so a reflection of changes in their language rather than being the influencer.

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