Thursday, February 5, 2009

Employing Quotation Marks

As there was no New York Times available by the time I got to the library this morning, I picked up a copy of the USA Today to read with my coffee and bagel. Because I love me a non-story, I flipped to read about Facebook in the Life (Purple) section. The headline reads:

Facebook friends share "25 Things"

As a fan of scare quotes and poorly employed punctuation, I felt it would be interesting to run through permutations of how the quotation marks' placement can change the whole meaning of the headline. I've change the single quotation marks to double to better illustrate the way I read the story.

"Facebook" friends share 25 Things - What is this "Facebook" you speak of?
Facebook "friends" share 25 Things - People that could hardly be considered friends
Facebook friends "share" 25 Things - It's effortless to tag people on Facebook
Facebook friends share "25" Things - We can't contain ourselves to this limit because we're narcissistic humans
Facebook friends share 25 "Things" - Quite literally trite and meaningless information

So, to my "Facebook" "friends", don't be "surprised" when I don't "tag" you or "read" about your "things".

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