Review: Because Internet by Gretchen McCulloch

The book cover.

The internet isn't the first technology to alter how we communicate, but it is making our language change faster and in more interesting ways than ever before. Linguistically inventive niche online communities spread slang and jargon exponentially faster than in the days when new dialects were constrained by physical space. What's more, social media provides a fascinating laboratory for watching language evolve in real time.

There's something profoundly disturbing as seeing your cutting-edge adolescent foibles presented as archaeology. Were my ICQ status updates just
and not as original as I hoped?

This is a breezy and enjoyable look at how early Internet culture has evolved and gone mainstream. How our limitations and expectations have shaped modern messaging. It is sympathetically and lovingly written and great at introducing the reader to concepts which they know intuitively, but have no academic awareness of.

But I'm still going to end all my messages will a full stop. I don't care how rude that makes me

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