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There will be no stopping my insults.

Things are not going to change.

All you poor sensitive souls out there, and you seem to multiply by the day, will simply have to accept my continuing rudeness.

There will be no apologies if what I write upsets you.

Grin and bear it, turn the other cheek, tweet away on Twitter, fulminate on Facebook,  do whatever makes you feel better.

But it will make no difference. You will not stop me; I am going to continue placing a FULL STOP at the end of my sentences.

This is in defiance of such academics as Canadian linguist Gretchen McCulloch, who was quoted in Britain’s Sunday Telegraph as stating that the younger generation consider full stops to be “rudely abrupt”.

The reason – as it is for so many instances where people can’t be bothered adhering to well-established rules  and practices – is today’s go-to whipping horse, social media.  Plus, of course, that ultra touchy amorphous mass known as “young people”.

This is the instant messaging generation that speaks a staccato lingua franca formed of brief phrases, interspersed with monosyllables such as “like”, “y’know”, “yeah” and “awesome”.

A fully-formed sentence is an unknown form of communication. A string of indecipherable emojis is their preferred means of expressing their thoughts, actions and emotions.

A survey of 126 undergraduates by Binghampton University in New York State found they considered texts ending in a full stop were less sincere than the same message without a full stop.

Go figure.

According to linguist McCulloch, for young people sending messages to each other, “the default way to break up your thoughts is to send each thought as a new message”.   Which clearly, in their minds at least, makes full stops redundant.

The minimum thing to send is the message itself and anything additional takes on an additional interpretation, says McCulloch.

Thus to end even a positive message with a full stop, can seem strangely aggressive to these precious little snowflakes.

The humble full stop – an essential part of fully formed written communication down the centuries – has now become an offensive weapon in the language of the fragile young.

So this little piece can well have given offence nineteen times up to here. Damn it, let’s make it a round twenty.

 

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