RE: "Grammar Stinks."

Subject: RE: "Grammar Stinks."
From: cpwinter -at- rahul -dot- net
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 2002 17:42:28 -0700

On 20 Sep 2002, at 11:50, Marguerite Krupp wrote:

> Once, long ago, in the dark ages of my youth, I studied and practiced Morse
> Code and other arcane arts required to get a ham radio license. In that
> context, it was common practice to use a shorthand for various words because
> of the tedious and error-prone nature of keying in every blessed letter.
> Some examples:
> CQ = "seek you"
> YL = "young lady"
> XYL = "wife" [Hold the flames, please; I'm just reporting!]
> plus several of the shorthand forms we see in IM-speak.
> I also remember those subway ads for a form of non-Gregg shorthand that used
> mangled word forms instead of squiggles: "U 2 kn rt gd...."
> Point is, it's not new, and none of the earlier forms corrupted the rhetoric
> of the folks who used them. Yes, language changes. I still hate the use of
> "transition" as a verb, but I expect it will eventually become accepted.
> Yuck! But that's the way it goes. Unless you're a super-fast typist, you'll
> likely use these shortcuts anyway - first in a context in which you can
> expect your audience will understand them, and then in a broader context.
> Some will die, some will live... probably longer than we will. So it goes.

Yes, I tend to agree with this point of view. Or perhaps I should say,
"FB on ur POV, YL." <g>

> Tech writing tie in:
> In the networking business, we use a lot of acronmyms. This is an accepted
> shorthand. But try asking non-specialists and then non-writers about the
> meaning of the acronym/initialism "ATM", and you'll get at least three
> different answers. It all comes back to the basic tech writing dictum, "Know
> your audience."
> Marguerite

I note that you did say "at least three". These are the ones that come
to mind:

1. General use -- Automatic Teller Machine
2. Datacomm -- Asynchronous Transfer Mode
3. Aerospace -- Apollo Telescope Mount

Any others?


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RE: "Grammar Stinks.": From: Marguerite Krupp

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