Here we are on WAMU’s Bandwidth. We shot this right before we hit the road and we had a blast. It must be said that it sounds even better and louder in person! Were out for three more weeks. Get at us on tour. Do it. 


It’s still cold out there, so watch Dana Falconberry play a pretty orchestral folk song in the summer breeze, courtesy of WAMU’s brand-spanking new Bandwidth site

Internet language on Gizmodo and WAMU

Several recent things about internet language! 

I’m quoted in this lexicon of current internet language on Gizmodo

Capital letters are OBVIOUSLY for emphasis. Enabled by the caps-lock key, they first may have evolved as a mistake. “In early generations of internet language, people who don’t use capitalizations or punctuation are seen as people who can’t type,” says Gretchen McCulloch, a linguist who runs Slate’s language blog. Now that everyone knows how to type, the capitals are often used ironically, or even meta-ironically, both sincere and commenting on its possible insincere jokiness, DON’T YOU GET IT JEEZ MOM. See also: aLtErNaTiNg CaPs

(Full article.) 

And today I talked to the Kojo Nnamdi Show about internet dialects, which aired live on WAMU and which you can also stream online here. I can’t copy-paste an excerpt since it was radio, not text, but key topics I remember talking about included stylized verbal incoherence mirroring emotional incoherence, doge, and “because x”. See also my entire internet language category, which is running to about seven pages these days. 

Also on Kojo with me were mikerugnetta, who has a video on internet dialects and especially tildes on the PBS Idea Channel, and Naomi Baron, who wrote the book Always On: Language in an Online and Mobile World. So that was a fun excuse to meet other interesting language people, although unfortunately the constraints of radio interviews meant we didn’t have a whole lot of time to actually just talk with each other. Maybe next time!