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Facebook Declares 'lol' Defunct

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I would imagine that a lot of people are curious about what actually goes on within the dark, beanbag infested, air hockey laden depths of the Facebook Fortress, but every now and again we're offered a little crumb of insight. Some of the revelations are genuinely interesting, such as their drone machinations. Other times it's just depressing, like the recent news that they're trying to ruin birthdays for everyone.

This though, this is just earth-shattering. Facebook have actually devoted real time and energy to measuring how people laugh on the internet. Using time that almost definitely could have been better spent on anything else, Facebook have drawn up a spread of frequency between the hahas, hehes, hohos, ho-ohs, lols, lmaos and roflcopters and it's brought them to the following conclusion: lol is no more.  

That's right, shed a tear for the acronym community because the classic abbreviation barely even figures on the list any more. It's joined the elephant graveyard (otherwise known as MySpace) of expired internet shorthand terms like the inexplicable 'hxc', the attention craving 'pc 4 pc' and the utterly demented 'zomg'. 

Now, allegedly, the most commonly applied shorthand for laughter is 'haha' (51.4%), which in this context is an umbrella term for any number of repeated 'has' as well, presumably, as 'ahaha', which is my weapon of choice most of the time. Placing in second was 'emoji', referring to any emoji which reflects laughter (33.7%) and in third was the sickeningly immature 'hehe' (13.1%). Lol, meanwhile, could only muster a measly 1.9%.

I never liked lol, mainly because it only ever seems to get used as a bookend to a sentence, rather than a reaction to something, so it often gave the impression that the person was either laughing at something they just said (which is deeply unsettling) or trying to pressure you into laughing at it (which is fascism). As we've discussed before, reactions in online chat are moving towards visual representation, rather than written text, so it probably won't be long before emojis overtake haha, and perhaps after that GIFs will push into the lead, but for the time being, RIP LOL, SYIH YUIA (figure it out). 


Callum Davies

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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Facebook Declares 'lol' Defunct Reviewed by Callum Davies on Monday, August 10, 2015 Rating: 5
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