Thanks, misplettings, and another question
meyerr at MAIL.SDSU.EDU
Thu Dec 9 19:12:00 UTC 1999
I think my original "thanks" got sucked into the ether somewhere, so I am
reposting it along with another question.
Thanks to all who replied to my question about the term "assurance".
Initially, I was only concerned with determining if I had somehow missed the
advent of a new term. Based on the replies I received, I can somewhat
inconclusively conclude that the party defending his punctuation was either
fabricating the term or thought it was synonymous with "assertion".
I've also taken a closer look at the data. It appears to me that this form
is part of this poster's "style". Perhaps it's intended to be snide or
sarcastic; if so, all it seems to do is irritate others. If anyone wants a
to take a gander at the thing in the wild, drop me a line off list and I'll
direct you to the newsgroup and thread where it originally appeared.
On the subject of intentional misplettings in Usenet: the regulars at
alt.folklore.urban have developed this into an artform. (Check their FAQs
for more info) Also, in an effort to keep down the troll traffic, they will
often asterisk-ize certain "magnet" words (e.g., g*n c*ntr*l, f*rt, bl*ck
h*lic*pt*rs) in an effort to confound folks (trolls) who use a keyword
search to find and pester froups where those topics are being discussed.
And finally, on the topic of Usenet flames in general: I've often wondered
if flaming (grammar/punctuation/spelling) has any distinct regional or
cultural variants. IOW, would someone in rec.nashville flame a ninny
differently from someone in ba.general (San Francisco bay area newsgroup)?
Does a flame war in soc.culture.african.american have a style distinct from
a flame war on soc.culture.mexican.american? Has anyone investigated this?
It seems like an exceptionally rich field for analysis.
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