SMS is the new black

A review of mass market mobile apps

Tech speak enters the lexicon

Posted by Admin on December 12, 2008

One of the things I love about language is the way that it evolves, it’s always changing and growing as new words and phrases are added. So it’s not altogether suprising that technology has been used as a source for some of those new words and phrases. What amazes me is the speed at which some of them have been incorporated into the language.

The Post Office has recently completed a report on this and has discovered some new phrases. My favourite:

– RAB – A massive faux pas – Comes from ‘Ross And Brand’ (as in ‘he’s done a RAB’) – and means committing a massive faux pas like Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand did on BBC Radio 2

I love how quickly that has got into our language. Others include:

– A GOOD job – Get Out Of Debt job – A Get Out Of Debt job. A risk-free role which will see you through the storm on a decent salary, used regularly by city boys facing job losses
– Code 35 – Broke – This comes from the code which appears on the gates at London Underground stations if you have insufficient credit on your Oyster card
– 404 – Clueless – Derived from the technical term ‘404 Not Found’, an error message seen on a web page to indicate a website cannot be detected. In common use, this means that you or the person you are referring to is clueless

Stewart Fox-Mills, Post Office® head of telecoms, said: “The Post Office® is the UK’s second largest supplier of mobile phone top-ups and a major supplier of broadband services – but we realise it’s not always easy for everyone to keep up with new lingo that these new technologies have brought about. That’s why we’ve produced a glossary of ‘tech chat’, which addresses commonly used abbreviations, from old familiars to the brand new. It is designed as a tool for anyone confused by the sort of language ‘Generation Text’ is using, to help them feel part of the digital revolution.”

There is apparently a full guide fronted by Jonathon Green, author of ‘The Chambers Slang Dictionary’, that can be downloaded, but at the moment the link isn’t working.


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