Wake up and smell the coffee, cafe, whatever

We’re not language purists here.  If you want to spell things in US English, or English as used by the English, or some variation thereof, we say “why not?”

Ok, many publisher would cringe at this mentality, and even question our professed Old Style, but the world today is in linguistic flux. Just as it was when Johnson wrote the first modern dictionary.

We can bemoan this as a breakdown of education, or wake up and smell the coffee.  The people who are leading the “free association spelling” of words are the most educated.

It’s the texting, tweeting, IMing among us.  People with education and money, that are using technology in much the same way 18th century printers did, when that was new technology.  Get bang for buck by writing in shorthand.

So is this a bad thing? Not really.  The world can survive and even savor multiple spellings of words in the same or closely related languages. Anyone that doubts this should read Sir Gibby. Or some of RL Stevenson’s lesser known volumes.

The people most passionate about correct spelling are those most concerned about what their spelling says about them.  It’s a vanity medium. And that’s too bad, because words, are always an idea medium.

Published in: on July 23, 2009 at 5:31 PM  Leave a Comment  
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