L'actrice Emma Thompson met en garde les jeunes contre leur façon de s'exprimer : "There is the necessity to have two languages - one that you use with your mates and the other that you need in any official capacity."

Le professeur Clive Upton de l'université de Leeds ne dit pas le contraire tout en relativisant ses propos : "If they do deploy the sort of language they're using on the streets in formal settings then it could well be a disadvantage to them but at other times it's quite clearly the way they get along, the way that they signal they belong in a group, the way that they fit in. And we all do that in our professional lives as well. We've got all our acronyms and our little words that we use that send a signal - I'm one of the club."

D'autre part, un mot comme "like", par exemple, permet de gagner du temps : "It has nothing to do with sloppiness, says John Ayto, editor of the Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang. We all use fillers because we can't keep up highly-monitored, highly-grammatical language all the time. We all have to pause and think."

"Another common use of "like" by young people is as a quotative, which is a grammatical device to mark reported speech. For example: "She was like, 'you aren't using that word correctly' and I was like, 'yes I am'." It is also commonly used to indicate a metaphor or exaggeration. "I, like, died of embarrassment when you told me to stop using slang." Alternatively, it is employed to introduce a facial expression, gesture or sound. A speaker may say "I was like..." and then hold their hands up, shrug or roll their eyes."

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Source : BBC News, 28/09/10