I think we can all agree that the tone of digital communication is decidedly different than that which occurs face to face. (At TeachThought, we’re unfortunately huge fans of the sarcastic and the sardonic.)
While this shift in tone could be further proof of the internet’s complete dissolution of decent human interaction, that’s probably a stretch. With the right touch, a nice layer of voice and personality can not only increase the readability of ideas, but create additional layers of meaning as well (irony and satire attacking ideas at the subtext level, for example).
Which is where these punctuation marks come in. CollegeHumor recently put together 8 new punctuation marks that, due to social media and digital communication, we suddenly need. We’ve included 4 below.
And while the post is (mostly) tongue-in-cheek, it does suggest the obvious: as modes and channels of communication change, language–being the living, organic thing that it is–will respond. Textspeak, social media “likes” and “+s”, and new punctuation marks are part of a larger change in how communication occurs.