Tag: graphicons


Linguists not exactly wow about FB new reactions

The introduction of Reactions, a set of five new “≈” with assigned textual meanings, probably isn’t supposed to be infantilizing. The social network just wants people to do more than “Like” someone else’s post. The new kids: Love, Sad, Angry, Wow, and Haha.

What do those words have in common? Not a lot, actually. To a grammar purist, that’s annoying. “These words are in radically different categories,” says Geoff Pullum, a linguist at the University of Edinburgh and contributor to the blog Language Log. “It looks like syntax is being thrown out the window here and being replaced by grunts like animals would make.”

Syntax, as you might remember, is the organization of words into sentences. By way of counter-example, syntactic conventions are what Internet meme languages like Dogespeak or Lolcats abuse. When you are sad because Monday, you are contravening the syntax of standard English. Much disappoint. Read more…