Thursday, January 30, 2014

Have We Hit the Digital Vocab Bubble?

I suppose there comes a point in everyone's life where they are forced to examine their speech.  Taking time to really look at the words they are using everyday and see if it's not possible to improve upon any of them.

Okay, perhaps this does not happen to everyone.  It happened to me though recently while casually ending an email with "Thanks!"  I tend to close many emails in this manner, whether I am intitiating a request or replying to one where something of value had been provided to me.  In this particular email though, of which I could not tell you what the subject matter was even about, something stopped me shortly after "-s!"  The word suddenly felt very impersonal.  Something you would say to a  clerk when they giving you change back, maybe.  As a digital signoff to someone you cowork with though?  It started to take on the same feel as a word you say over and over until it suddenly loses all meaning.  Maybe because it had.

The email was changed to a full "Thank you!" and I'm sure not a darn bit of notice was paid to it either way.  This is a good thing because it means people are possibly using their extra neuro energy on ways to make peace in the Middle East, rather than ponder the variation of vocabulary.  

Nevertheless, this small snapshot of time got me to thinking about the depreciation of value seen in other words due to this digital age.  The qualitative analysis was astounding.

"Ah": Formerly used as an intellectual placeholder, is now just confused for being an actual exclamation of enthusiasm or a bored response to your mundane text about the Polar Vortex.
"Ha" vs. "Haha" vs. "Hahaha" vs. "Hahaha!":  Is a rating system for how funny your comments are.
"Okay"-->"Ok"-->"K": The evolution of annoyance someone has with either you, the conversation, or the platform for which the conversation is taking place.
"Omg.": If said as its own sentence, is a good indication you should not have told that person whatever piece of information you leaked to them.  They are clearly not mature enough for the context of the situation on many levels.
"I Can't":  ...was there a subject to that predicate?
"Yikes": Is a tell-tale sign the dialogue is about silly drama.
"I'm confused...":  Often given as a response because no one knows what anyone else is talking about anymore.

{Image Credit: The Sartorialist}

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