Listen, Internet citizens, we need to have a chat.
Look, I know you love your chatspeak. It slips into my conversations on occasion as well. I know my LOL from my LMAO from my ROTFL. I’ll say “lolwut” or “wtf” to something to something that’s particularly baffling. I know when people are doing things for the lulz.
But I never ever ever finish a sentence that is not genuinely funny with “lol”, nor do I slip it into conversation when it’s not appropriate. Consider the following:
Person 1: My cat just used the litterbox all by herself!
Person 2: Awesome, lol.
Person 1: I hate this place.
Person 2: Quit and move here. lol.
Person 1: Today I got fired, got chased down by a gang of bandits on the way to the car, got to the car to discover that it had been destroyed by the bandits, got beaten up by the bandits and my wallet stolen on the way to the bus, and had to walk home.
Person 2: Wow, that sucks, lol.
I may have made these up, but if you think I’m exaggerating, search Twitter or Facebook’s public updates for “lol”, and you’ll see exactly what I’m saying here. People enjoy throwing “lol” into sentences where they don’t even make sense. It’s just as if I said, “I like turkey sandwiches. Giraffes are awesome.” You gained no new information about my like of turkey sandwiches, and you have no idea what my like of giraffes is doing there. Where’s the context? Do I want to have a picnic at the zoo? Do I want to eat a turkey and giraffe sandwich? Everyone wants to know. Replace “Giraffes are awesome” with “lol”. We get “I like turkey sandwiches. lol.” See? “LOL” serves the same purpose as “Giraffes are awesome.” None. Though at least with the giraffes, we learn that I like them. I should just save my interest in giraffes for a better time, maybe when we’re not talking about what to eat for lunch.
So do everyone a favor, Internet citizens. Save LOL for when you’re actually laughing and not as a meaningless punctuation mark and conversation filler. The rest of us thank you.