Is The Period Becoming an Expression of Anger?
November 26, 2013 2:02 PM
comment(s) - last by
In the text area, a familiar punctuation mark is taking on a new meaning
digital age of instant communication
has dramatically affected the English language by
changing its grammar, spelling, and vocabulary
. Then again the English language has survived and thrived due in part to its shameless flexibility, which historically led it to liberally borrow from other language and accept unusual new creative linguistic constructs.
The New Republic
is a news site that focuses primarily on espousing neoliberal political views, but it also offers a bit of interesting technology coverage at times. Story editor
has actually offered up
a rather interesting piece
on how the period has become a long desired piece of punctuation --
the "irony mark"
The American University
found that at the time students add sentence ending punctuation (i.e. '!', '?', and '.') 39 percent of the time in texts and 45 percent of the time in online chats. The punctuation at the end of the last sentence of the text -- the so-called "transmission-ending punctuation" occurred especially infrequently. It was found in only 29 percent for texts and 35 percent for IMs.
Part of English language speakers' trend of shortening words -- noted by other peer-reviewed research -- and dropping punctuation in the digital age is out of necessity. Twitter posts are limited to 140 characters, traditional SMS was limited to 160 characters.
But it is still somewhat odd to observe how in an age where punctuation is being mothballed by so many, that digital denizens are increasing the period ('.') to express sarcasm, frustration, and/or anger.
, a professor of linguistics at the
University of Pennsylvania
, tells Mr. Blair:
Not long ago, my 17-year-old son noted that many of my texts to him seemed excessively assertive or even harsh, because I routinely used a period at the end.
In the world of texting and IMing … the default is to end just by stopping, with no punctuation mark at all. In that situation, choosing to add a period also adds meaning because the reader(s) need to figure out why you did it. And what they infer, plausibly enough, is something like ‘This is final, this is the end of the discussion or at least the end of what I have to contribute to it.’
But lest the humble dot feel demeaned, it still has many friendlier usages, such as it symbolic use in internet domain names and "..." which strangely has the reverse affect as a single '.' when ending the sentence -- inviting the conversation to continue.
The New Republic
The American Univ. [pdf; study]
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
12/18/2013 10:29:40 AM
I am not a Grammar Nazi, but I do get somewhat annoyed by some of the comments I see on this and other sites. I see allot of comments that look like they are written by a 13 year old girl who is just leaning English. Who knows, maybe they are written by a 13 year old girl who is just leaning English.
"I f***ing cannot play Halo 2 multiplayer. I cannot do it." -- Bungie Technical Lead Chris Butcher
Study: Teen Girls Average 80 Texts Per Day
April 20, 2010, 8:33 AM
Textese Cell Phone Language Emerges: Cn U Rd Ths?
December 10, 2008, 10:16 AM
Latest By Jason Mick
Retiree Sues Apple For $7,500 for Wiping Honeymoon Photos From His iPhone
November 30, 2015, 10:23 AM
Creationists are Mad About Google Doodle Depicting Evolution
November 24, 2015, 8:48 PM
iPhone 7 May Pack 3-4 GB Memory, More Storage; 4-Inch Comeback is Rumored
November 20, 2015, 10:12 PM
DHS and TSA: Whoops, We Missed That 73 Airport Employees May be Terrorists
November 19, 2015, 2:16 PM
OnePlus One, OnePlus 2 Will Receive Android Marshmallow in Q1 2016
November 16, 2015, 9:58 AM
Twitter Senior VP: "Diversity is Important, But We Can’t Lower the Bar"
November 9, 2015, 9:59 AM
"Prepare to be Punished": Microsoft is Killing OneDrive With Cuts, Blames Users
November 3, 2015, 8:23 PM
True Beef or Sloppy Sausage? Digging Into the Red Meat + Cancer Correlation
October 27, 2015, 3:05 AM
Lenovo Whoa: Motorola Droid MAXX 2 and Turbo 2 Break Cover in Leaks
October 26, 2015, 3:12 PM
Leak: Apple Preps for First Real Android App Foray With New Apple Music App
October 24, 2015, 1:59 PM
Inspiron Laptops & 2-in-1 PCs
September 25, 2016, 9:00 AM
The Samsung Galaxy S7
September 14, 2016, 6:00 AM
Apple Watch 2 – Coming September 7th
September 3, 2016, 6:30 AM
Apple says “See you on the 7th.”
September 1, 2016, 6:30 AM
Apple sued because of iPhone 6 Touch Disease
August 31, 2016, 7:00 AM
Get Ready to wait in line – iPhone 7 due September.
August 18, 2016, 7:15 AM
Most Popular Articles
Update: Problem-Free Galaxy Note7s CPSC Approved
September 22, 2016, 5:30 AM
FDA Cleared, Shockwave Lithoplasty for Peripheral Vascular Disease
September 22, 2016, 5:45 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM
Are you ready for this ? HyperDrive Aircraft
September 24, 2016, 9:29 AM
Smartphone Screen Protectors – What To Look For
September 21, 2016, 9:33 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Burlington Gun Attack
Sep 27, 2016, 5:00 AM
Who is in Risk of Getting Oral Cancer?
Sep 23, 2016, 6:02 AM
France Bans Plastic Eating Utensils in Restaurants
Sep 18, 2016, 10:49 AM
Progress Against Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Sep 17, 2016, 5:30 AM
Apple Watch Series 2 - Number 1 in the Customer Satisfaction.
Sep 7, 2016, 6:19 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information