It’s happened to the best of us. Whether we’ve accidentally let it slip in class, or reflexively used it as our go-to response, we have, each and every one of us, done it. And no, I’m not talking about a fart.
We’ve actually said “lol”. Out loud. In public. As if it were a word. We have inserted not only this abbreviation, but a plethora of others into our daily vocabulary as replacements for the usual “haha”, witty response, or even pity laugh.
And that’s just the starting point. How many of you have caught yourself saying “IDK” instead of “I don’t know”? How many of you have stopped yourself mid-sentence when you heard yourself say “G2G” instead of “Got to go” or even a simple “Later”? Just take a moment to consider that we have reverted to actual AIM slang to express ourselves. And did I mention, in public?
In a world so focused on technological advancement, speed is success. And while this is arguably a good thing, it ceases to be so when it cuts our sentences shorter and shorter. We are living out every English teacher’s nightmare, lowering the quality of our language more and more.
And I haven’t even mentioned Facebook slang. It’s incredible to observe the additions to modern language today as a result of this social networking phenomenon. Before the advent of Facebook, if you had instructed someone to “Write on your wall”, you would be accused of vandalism. Today, however, it’s typical- everyone knows that you’re referring to a communication mechanism on a popular website. And how many times a day do you hear people talking about what they discovered on their newsfeed?
And notice that I’m writing in first person here. As in we, I have done this. And I write this article as a shamefaced rebuke of not only the downward spiral of my own language but also the degradation of language in general… both in and out of Milken. Don’t get me wrong- I’m not criticizing technological advancement by any means. The fact that this article is published in a completely online newspaper establishes that. What I am saying, however, is that we can’t get too carried away with this- we cannot continue to condense, abbreviate, and abridge the English language, because the result is simply pitiful.
Just consider the fact that our gift to the children of the future, besides global warming (have fun kids!) and role models like Snooki is a language comprised of Internet slang abbreviations and technological slang.
That does not make me LOL at all.
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