[LMB] OT: Srsly

Terra howtoparent at gmail.com
Sat Jun 28 18:44:19 BST 2008

Ed Burkhead wrote:
>> Srsly = Seriously.
>> I've noticed that Webspeak tends to trend toward
>> Acronyms --------- OMG (Oh My Gosh/G*d/Ghu)
>> Devowling -------- Srsly (Seriously)
>> Numerification --- l8r (Later!)
> <polemic>
> I could sympathize with "webspeak" back in the days of 300 baud, perhaps
> even in the 1200 baud days, but today?  NO!
> Ed
Actually the really abbreviated webspeak isn't webspeak at all - it's 
SMS speak.  It is quite laborious to type on your number keypad on your 
phone, but teenagers text *all day long* and they've got the art of "say 
it in less than 4 letters" down to a science.

The bits that are truly web in origin evolved in chat rooms where you 
had to type FAST in order to get a word in edgewise because there were 
15 other people typing at 80 wpm.  The more you could shorthand the 
common phases (LOL, BRB, DH/DW, OMG) the more you could actually 
participate as the chat scrolled past so fast it was hard to even keep 
up with the reading, let alone the typing.  In communities where I was 
active a few years ago it wasn't uncommon to have 20+ people in a chat 
room, 3-4 conversations going on at once - and you'd be participating it 
ALL 3-4 conversations.  Abbreviations were absolutely necessary :)

Clearly I've spent far too much time online :D 

I will say, though, that in intense communities where there are real 
issues being discussed, young people learn proper grammar, spelling  and 
narrative flow structure right quick - because otherwise they aren't 
listened to.  If you sound dumb in a community on a bulletin board, a 
LiveJournal or a Blog, no one will take you seriously.  Blogging is 
making writers out of a lot of people who would never have paid 
attention to good writing standards in high school.   Fanfiction is 
fantastic training ground for authors.  I've followed several fanfic 
writers from their sketchy beginnings to their first published books of 
their own original material.  All of their education was in fanfic, 
polishing their work with the help of many beta readers and then their 
general public readers.


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