Norway has, roughly, two languages.
One is Bokmal, book language, sort of the educated Norwegian’s Norwegian, actually based on Danish (’cause they got conquered by the Danes once upon a time).
The other is Nynorsk, new Norwegian, more like a common man’s language.
Norwegians learn both. Apparently most of them use Bokmal for written/formal purposes but more people use Nynorsk for speaking.
I’m glossing over a lot of details here; see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norwegian_language for more. My own connection to this subject is that I enrolled briefly in first-semester Norwegian in college, although I had too many hours that semester and wisely dropped this course. (Retaining only the first five sentences of this post.)
It strikes me though that English could be headed for a mushy situation like this, though for completely different reasons.
Forces accelerating the rate of change in English and/or loosening the shackles of the grammarian:
– Search engine optimization – it is in the commercial interest of various companies to be found even when the searcher has misspelled something
– Similarly, commercial pressures on publishers of dictionaries – it’s in their interest to have the language change rapidly, making last year’s edition out of date
– TXTING. Texting works like a pseudo-Occam’s Razor, shaving words down to abbreviated and/or more phonetic spellings. Twitter might contribute here too.
I’ll hazard a guess that tomorrow’s college students will write Bok-english for academic and career purposes but use Ny-english for real life.