WTF is Grammar?

Thomas Blaikie at Literary Review:

What is the language of the internet? Most of us have probably heard of LOL (or lol), omg, emojis and even memes, and come face to face with unconventional confections of exclamation marks, repeated letters and novelty punctuation. For people like us, top-end book lovers, the language of the internet might seem, well, rather ghastly: illiterate, limited, debased, invasive like Japanese knotweed, a frightful triffid threatening to obliterate decent standards of communication. They, the internet lovers, if they even bother to glance in our direction, will think: omg!!!!11!!! sad lol.

I recently heard of somebody who no longer laughs. Instead she says ‘lol’, which might be a new internet way of laughing. An urban myth, perhaps, but there’s a common assumption that too much online activity transforms people into zombies in ‘real’ life. As is perhaps inevitable, linguists like Gretchen McCulloch take a different view.

more here.