Der folgende Text betrachtet die Varietätenverwendung von Schweizer ChatterInnen und rückt dabei altersspezifische Fragen in den Vordergrund. Im Gegensatz zu vielen Versuchen, an die Sprache Jugendlicher heranzugehen, kommt hier ein quantitativer Ansatz zur Anwendung, der die Sprache der jugendlichen ChatterInnen mit der Sprache von ChatterInnen anderer Generationen vergleicht.
The present study assumes that the use of the dialect as written language in private communication is a recent phenomenon. According to the apparent-time construct, it is expected that younger generations write more dialect than older generations. This hypothesis is tested by means of a quantitative approach to the ratio of dialects to Standard German in Swiss on-line chat rooms. In every one of the eleven examined channels, which all can be considered as typical flirt channels with different age structures, both varieties are used side by side with a predominance of the dialects. The results reveal that younger chatters use more dialect than the chatters of the middle generation, however, the dialect portion rises again from the middle to the older generation. So the distribution does not point to a language change. In contrary, this is a typical pattern of age differentiation for sociolinguistic variables, that are not undergoing change. While the less prestigious variant, the dialect, is used more frequently by younger chatters, and also by older chatters, the prestige variant, Standard German, is used relatively more frequently by middle-aged chatters. At the same time it becomes clear that the use of the dialect as a written language in the on-line chat rooms is not a phenomenon of youth language.