Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Vocabulary Lesson: Disemvowel

Disemvoweling is when a person removes the vowels from a sentence. This is a practice reserved for Internet commenters that leave unsavory, impolite, or just plain mean comments on a blog post. Time named the practice one of the top 50 inventions of 2008.

The idea is to make the person look ridiculous. It's a unique form of censorship, in that the comment is still available to read. It sometimes draws more attention to the comment due to the challenge of reading it sans vowels. The practice may effectively eject the person from the community.

Here is what disemvoweling looks like, using the phrase, "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog." Wikipedia used this example too. It turns out that the spam on this blog is pretty mild.
Th qck brwn fx jmps vr th lzy dg
I don't disemvowel, simply because I'd have to edit comments, and that is far too much work when I can just click DELETE.

Additional Resources:
Disemvoweling, Wikipedia Kotaku’s New Tool: The Straight Razor of Disemvoweling, Kotaku How To Keep Hostile Jerks From Taking Over Your Online Community, InformationWeek

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