Lolcats and Lolspeak: the importance of the Internet culture for English professionals
The meme culture is a growing manifestation of young pop culture on the internet. One of the most famous memes are the Lolcats, picture macros of cats with captions written in an English dialect rich in abbreviations, idioms and grammatical variation called Lolspeak. This variety, though, is not explored by linguists or teachers, who could use it for written variation research and contextualized language culture classes. In this paper, the concept of meme and the Internet context of the Lolcats will be explored in order to give readers a cultural background, and a brief theoretical approach to variation in written Internet English will support the theory that Lolspeak is important for English learners and professionals. Thirty captions written in Lolspeak were transcribed into orthographically correct English. After that, the original Lolspeak words were counted and classified in the form of a glossary of terms and uses.
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