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Subject: Re: Why Johnny can't spell ( 17 of 58 )
Posted by bubster

I would disagree slightly with the idea that the "online" word forms a third category beyond the spoken word and the written. Accepting that there is a difference between spoken and written language (in terms, for instance, of how efficiently or effectively each conveys the thought, emotion, idea, whathaveyou, being communicated), what I've found most fascinating in my (short) time reading and contributing to the posted world, is that the online communication melds aspects of writing and speaking.
Someone (CrazyOne?) in another post in another place recently reminded us that you can't see the sarcasm in the written word. Now, I think that sometimes you can; but this is certainly where the informal style of posts come into there own. It is perfectly acceptable to write, "Whoa, that's the best argument I've ever seen *sarcasm*", or use descriptive phrases like "*taking foot out of mouth*" or emoticons - a new term to me but one I expect I'll be using a lot ;-).
But what are these devices but shorthand methods for making up for the short-comings of the medium: ie the inability to _hear_ the voice tone or _see_ the expression, and the desire to impart as much as possible without lengthy literary norms like "'...', he said sarcastically".
Great devices, useful devices, but devices with their precursors in spoken and written language.

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