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'Net Speak' Like 'Because' Is Making English a Warmer Language | New Republic

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Internet-Speak is Improving English Because Empathy


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Take the peculiarly witty locution that the American Dialect Society just anointed as the word of the year, the new because. It is now acceptable, at least in tweets and such, to write things like “I stayed home because weather,” “I just eat them by the handful because chocolate,” and “Dow closes at record high for 35th time this year because Obama.”

Some have suggested that this new usage hotly insists that something is “a completely valid incredibly important thing to be doing.” However, that one doesn’t really work for things like the weather, or “Going to bed at nine because tired.” What all of these usages of the new because have in common is that they imply that the reader shares the same specific, many-layered feeling about the thing referred to—i.e. the particular joy of chocolate or the particular state of the weather at a given time and what the proper responses are to it.

That is, the new because is about the mental nuances that we all have in common. It reaches out—the linguistic expression of a lifted eyebrow, a stretched out vowel (think Homer Simpson’s “Mmm, chahhhhhh-colaaaate …”), or a touch on the arm. It’s a substitute in text messages for things like facial expressions, vocal intonations, and body language. But because texting is a more deliberate activity than casual speaking, people can be more pointedly expressive than they might in a face-to-face conversation.

That makes sense to me because because.

It seems to me that the Doge meme is a derivative of this trend.

Oh wow, from your link:

And nowadays — this is where things get interesting — people who write in CSWE actually mark themselves as untrustworthy by doing so. Because the new usage, call it Modern Written English, is everything CSWE is not: first-person, colloqiual, breezy, open, and personal. That’s what readers understand and trust. But if you write like a high-school essay, or the Wall Street Journal? That is now a big red flag. Your readers don’t know you … but they do know that you have deliberately hidden who you are, by donning that mask called CSWE. And on some level they do not like it.

DFW (the late David Foster Wallace) again:

When I say or write something, there are actually a whole lot of different things I am communicating. The propositional content (the actual information I’m trying to convey) is only one part of it. Another part is stuff about me, the communicator. Everyone knows this. It’s a function of the fact that there are uncountably many well-formed ways to say the same basic thing, from e.g. “I was attacked by a bear!” to “Goddamn bear tried to kill me!” to “That ursine juggernaut bethought to sup upon my person!” and so on [...] “Correct” English usage is, as a practical matter, a function of whom you’re talking to and how you want that person to respond — not just to your utterance but also to you.

This is the weird thing the Internet has done to language: Standard Written English — or, at least, its most fundamentalist form, Clinical Standard Written English — has actually become incorrect in most online contexts.

Right! English language is evolving rapidly because Internet.

Because because will soon be in parlance because because because.


Yoda quote because

Yoda I smell bacon meme funny quote because because

P.S. This new acceleration started in 2006 with LOLCAT speak:

Come 2013, LOLCAT was considered an official Twitter language:


Related:  Have you read Anthony Burgess' "A Clockwork Orange", published in 1962?

Nadsat is a mode of speech used by the nadsat, members of the teen subculture in the novel A Clockwork Orange. The antihero and narrator of the book, Alex, uses it in first-person style to relate the story to the reader. He also uses it to communicate with other characters in the novel, such as hisdroogs, parents, victims, and any authority-figures with whom he comes in contact. As with many speakers of non-standard varieties of English, Alex is capable of speaking standard English when he wants to. It is not a written language: the sense that readers get is of a transcription of vernacularspeech.

Nadsat is basically English with some borrowed words from Russian. It also contains influences from Cockney rhyming slang, the King James Bible, the German language, some words of unclear origin, and some that Burgess invented. The word nadsat itself is the suffix of Russian numerals from 11 to 19 (-надцать). The suffix is an almost exact linguistic parallel to the English '-teen,' and is derived from 'на,' meaning 'on' and a shortened form of 'десять,' the number ten. 'Droog' is Russian друг 'close friend'.[2] Some of the words are also almost childish English such as eggiweg ('egg') and appy polly loggy ('apology'), as well as regular English slang sod and snuff it. The word like and the expression the old are often used as fillers or discourse markers.

That takes me back. Hard to believe it was published 50 years ago!

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