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[The following message is written on a CG scale of 1, i.e., no satire or
other potentially mistakable content and will cause him no further constipation.]

--- On Mon, 1/21/13, George Corley <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> This is so false that it sounds like satire.  

Yes indeed! Got it in one.
 
> > For example, were I such a Central Planner
> 
> Do spelling reforms have to come from a despotic "Central
> Planner"?

"Reforms" I think probably do. Ordinary people are certainly capable of
doing whatever they like. Just look at all the text messages that have a
completely different spelling system as compared to an ordinary email or
written text. A quick look at some common conventions shows a sort of
return to vowelless writing as well as some use of numerical rebuses or
symbological writing and heavy use of abbreviations and acronyms.

None of this came from a central planner, to be sure, but neither is it
a "reform". It's simply a natural evolution specific to a particular
written medium. Put a device like a cell phone in enough people's hands 
and they'll come up with an easy way to communicate with it. But I 
wouldn't call Textlish a "reform" of any kind.

You mentioned that printers and dictionary writers standardiz/sed the
spelling -- sure, that's a natural consequence of the business. It didn't 
come from any kind of language board or governmental authority or
Academy. These kinds of changes are much more organic and democratic.

>  Webster's reforms caught on in the US because his
> dictionary sold well.
>  Many languages have undergone reforms due to independant
> action of
> intellectuals and writers which were only later officially
> supported.  Even
> the Chinese Communist Party, when it created simplified
> characters, drew
> from existing calligraphic forms and shorthand that was
> already in use.  If
> such a strictly authoritarian system can draw from the
> existing culture
> when making reforms, certainly small reforms occuring in the
> populace can bubble up in a democratic system.

I don't see any problem with this at all! As a matter of fact, I was
thinking largely of these fictitious central planners drawing heavily on
Textlish and other modern net-based jargons for their reforms.

I guess it's more a matter of definition. I see "reform" as more of a top
down and official process, where decisions are made and executed and 
enforced; while ordinary language change, such as we all know languages 
undergo all the time, is a bottom up process -- whether it's yokels out in 
the bush or intellectuals in the cultural centers generating the change, 
the change is organic and non-directed!

--- Mathieu Roy wrote:

> I call Poe's law. ;) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poe%27s_law)

Hadn't heard of that one! Good one to know. I'm certainly aware of the
shortcomings of the text only medium; but sometimes a good bit of satire
or fiction is just ruined all to hell with a plethora of warning labels 
and needless consumer advisories.

--- Christophe Grandsire wrote:

> No. I will always call out nonsense when I see it. If you don't like it,
> that's *your* problem. Stop spouting nonsense then.

I shall continue to spout whatever nonsense I damn well please, sir, and
whenever the spirit move me so to do!

> If you were not being serious, there was *absolutely no way to see that 
> in your mail*. 

Humor not always marked. Deal with it.

> On the contrary, it was very much in line with the ultra-conservative 
> opinions you've shown time and again on the list. 

I very much doubt you can name five "ultra-conservative" opinions that I
hold. I don't ever recall inviting you into the voting booth with me, nor
have I ever discussed my own views on those matters with you. I can only
guess at the things that stick in your craw, though would caution against
falling for the assumption that whatever constitutes discussions about
creative matters or fictional realities must be identical to views held
about real world issues.

> This is email: there's no way to see if you're winking!

Indeed not. And it is not a requirement that I must wink at you every
damn time I write a message here.

> As George's message shows, I'm not the only one who took what you wrote
> seriously. So maybe the problem is not on my side but rather on yours.

And George instantly got that it is satire. One would think that after ten 
or more years of writing such things, you'd get it by now. Guess not! I 
freely admit my own faults, Mr Perfection, so I thank you very much for 
pointing out the speck in my eye. Yet again. Guess if you can't deal, 
well, as they say, al fe rout ou.

Padraic