Because podcast

By Vox

Gretchen McCulloch is a self-described “internet linguist,” host of the podcast Lingthusiasm, and author of the recent book Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language. In it, she demonstrates that the way we've come to speak on the internet -- from emojis to exclamation points -- is not random or arbitrary, but part of a broader attempt to make our written communication more vibrant, meaningful, and, genuinely human. Far from ‘ruining’ the written English language, internet-speak, McCulloch argues, is revolutionizing language in unprecedented, and ultimately positive, ways. We discuss why I feel bad if I don't use enough exclamation points (or use too many), why postcards are the pre-internet predecessors to Instagram, how emojis act as written equivalents of our body language, why sarcasm is like a “linguistic trust fall,” the meaning of “Ok boomer” and much more. Book recommendations: It’s Complicated:The Social Lives of Networked Teens by danah boyd  You Look Like a Thing and I Love You by Janelle Shane This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone If you enjoyed this episode, you may also like: danah boyd on why fake news is so easy to believe You will love this conversation with Jaron Lanier, but I can’t describe it My book is available for pre-order! You can find it at Want to contact the show? Reach out at You can subscribe to Ezra's new podcast Impeachment, explained on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, Pocket Casts, or your favorite podcast app. Credits: Producer and Editor - Jeff Geld Researcher - Roge Karma Engineers - Cynthia Gil Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

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