Blogland,  Dress Down Friday

Commenters and catch phrases

In his latest review of contemporary catch phrases, Ron Rosenbaum writes:

One thing I’ve noticed (and I’m sure you have, too) is that many new catchphrases these days first take root among blog commenters. But there’s a whole set of phrases from the blog-commenter community that have not aged well—just sayin’, well played, what he said, epic fail, crickets—and are getting a little long in the tooth from overuse. Just sayin’.

I think I’ve seen all of these, or variations of them, in the Harry’s Place comments– except epic fail, and I’m not entirely sure what that means.

I was ready to add what planet are you from? to the list of overused blog commenter catchphrases, but then I saw a variation that makes me laugh: What color is the sky on your planet?

And what about stay classy, an ironic comment usually made about another commenter’s abusive comment? In my last examination of catchphrases, I was still unsure about stay classy, but I have to say that, despite its becoming an all-too-common staple of blog-comment culture, I like it, because it’s one of the few catchphrases through which members of the commentariat display an awareness of their own tendency for abusiveness—display any irony at all—and it actually makes me laugh out loud when I read it in conjunction with the comments of an abuser.

I don’t read every comment at Harry’s Place, and if you do, I deeply pity you. But I can’t recall a commenter employing stay classy in response to an abusive commenter. Like Rosenbaum, I kind of like it and would encourage the practice here.

One kind of blog-comment abuser I’m sick of is the infantile right-wing commenter types who think they’re being incredibly clever by making fun of Obama’s name.

Yes, there were nitwits on the left who gave us the offensive “Bushitler,” etc. But enough with the Obama variations! The Nobama, the Obummer, the O-nada, the Ozero, the Obambi and the like. All indices of the commenter’s subprime (C.P.!) playground-level intelligence. And then there’s Obongo, not uncommon among right-wing blog commenters, which is pure, inexcusable, low-IQ racism. Stay classy.

I think most of those hilarious variations on Obama’s name have appeared in our comments, and I’m sure they have convinced countless readers to turn against the President. Stay classy.