The Origin of Txt Spk

I’ve just watched The Magnificent Seven.

Again.

I don’t know how many times I’ve seen that movie, but I’ve run out of fingers.

And toes.

And I know it so well that I could watch it again right now and recite the whole thing as it unfolds before me. But I spotted something for the first time tonight and I’m just a little bit horrified.

As the closing credits rolled it announced proudly that it was released thru United Artists!

THRU!

The film was released in 1960! Have we really had txt spk all this time? Hw lng hs ths bn gng? Has it really been infiltrating society for over half a century and we’ve only grown wise to it since the mobile phone revolution?

Answers people! Let’s get to the bottom of this now! Has anyone else got any other examples of this language erosion that date back as far, or warts and all time, even further?

Not that I imagine for the briefest of nanoseconds that we can stop the rot. After all, language evolves and we have the power of Canute to prevent it. But it’s nice to know the history!

So, answers and examples on a postcard…scratch that – answers and examples via this website (another form of evolution, but one we accept wholeheartedly), to the question: How long have we had txt spk?

Away you go! Take part! Get involved!

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Breaking The Mould – The Holy Grail of Writing

Breaking the mould is the holy grail of writing. Finding expression like nobody before. Standing apart from the crowd.

It’s possible, certainly, but not probable. Chances are, if you think you’re a unique voice, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. Somebody somewhere has done it before.

Like the magic rule of three. You say something, explain it, and then qualify it. Just like the examples above.

Somebody somewhere used it first. Then others followed. Now writers use this device all the time.

So maybe you should set your sights lower. Aim for something more achievable. Less ambitious.

Like world peace. Or an end to global poverty. A cure for death.

People have become used to the rule of three. Now if you stop at two it feels unfinished.

On another note, more than three appears clumsy. Like the writer is struggling for clarity. To find the right words. Labouring the point. Like that really.

Like I say, it’s the magic number. The rule. The law.

But the rule of three must have started somewhere. Somewhen. Sometime.

And then it grew into the norm. This literary device. This catchy conjuror.

Thankfully there’s always someone out there hell bent on destroying the norm and poking a finger in the eye of comfortable predictability and nothing will stop them from finding their grail. So they toil and they toil and then they toil some more in search of the inspiration with their perspiration to break this new mould that society has cradled to its bosom so vigorously that it’s in danger of suffocating the creative spark that fuelled the imaginative inferno in the first place. And of course they’re too late because society’s yearning for its warmth has already snuffed the fragile flame and what was once a creative beacon lighting the path of the future has been rendered a spent torch sucked dry by the very ones who sought to breathe eternal life into its core and suckle on its power. And nothing is new or unique or original anymore and society thirsts for new and original and unique, but is wandering in a desert wilderness. And this desert wilderness tortures and torments even the strongest minds until they lose their ever more tentative grip on reality, and in tandem with their desert wanderings, their minds wander a metaphorical barren wilderness until they spew unchecked, unfettered, uncensored, unadulterated, raw beauty onto the world and now there is no editing because to edit would be to tarnish and destroy the creative seed that has been sown in this raging, ranting, rambling cacophony of literary noise. A noise of beauty, of fury, of power, of essence, of being. It crackles with electric energy; it thrums with pulsing rhythm; soars with eagle grace; shines brighter than a galaxy of stars; soothes the soul in the warmth of its embrace and penetrates the heart easier than a baby’s smile.

And so the stream of consciousness is born.

And it’s new and unique and original once more. Until it’s tired and old and not new. Not unique. Not original. Just same same, not different.

So the quest begins for another new voice. Another new sound. Another holy grail.

And the quest will continue forever, because as soon as something new is found, it’s not new anymore.