Buzzfeed's 7 tips for writing in the social-media ageby The Listener
BuzzFeed copy chief Emmy J Favilla gives a guide to language in the internet age in her new book.
2. It’s fine to flout the rules when you have a solid understanding of what the rules are and a calculated reason for doing so: for tone, humour, readability.
3. Use anti-gay rather than homophobic; anti-trans rather than transphobic, etc. Phobic implies a fear, something that cannot be helped, and its use can perpetuate stereotypes.
4. To ship means to wish for the coupling up of a (usually fictional) pair. Stan is a superfan and can be noun or verb. LOL has acquired a more subtle meaning, and haha (and variants) are on the rise.
5. A full stop rather than a line break can now turn an innocent phrase into an expression of annoyance or aggression, whether passive or active.
6. One day we’ll be ripping up the pages of our usage manuals in celebration of the breakdown in distinction between lay and lie.
7. The ability to switch instantly between webspeak and formal language is a boon. Every era has had its slang and quirks. You don’t need to accept them as yours, but don’t discount them by default.
A WORLD WITHOUT “WHOM”: THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO LANGUAGE IN THE BUZZFEED AGE, by Emmy J Favilla (Bloomsbury, $26.99)
This article was first published in the March 24, 2018 issue of the New Zealand Listener.
The Law Society is investigating a female lawyer, but silent about how it’s dealing with sexual misconduct matters.Read more
Nearly $30 billion will be spent on Auckland transport in the next 10 years, partly funded by a fuel tax, private finance and tolls.Read more
Incel - short for involuntary celibacy - has now claimed the suspect in the Toronto van attack, Alek Minassian, as its own.Read more
Groups working with homeless people are bracing themselves for another gruelling few months as winter sets in.Read more
In a world a-twitter, small infractions attract hysterical reactions, and abject confession is the only currency with which redemption can be bought.Read more
An illuminating insight into Secretary Clinton's experience as a woman in politics, you could be seeing her live at Auckland's Spark Arena on May 7.Read more