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Where’d All The Grammar Go?

April 29, 2024

Written By:

McCall Moore

Like many Millennials, there are endless things about Gen Z that perplex me to no end: the TikTok trends, the clothes, but more than anything else — the grammar. 

Last week, I was on a chairlift with a sophomore at CU Boulder. She was fearless and hilarious, as most 18-21-year-olds are. What struck me the most was how she spoke — a mix of syntax, slang, and jargon that moved so fast I could’ve sworn I missed 20 years of my life and was suddenly a Boomer trying to keep up. So much so, that I spent most of my car ride home wondering if the generation above me viewed us Millennials the same way when we were that age. 

While 2020 saw a shift in prioritization from in-person to digital experiences, this current era of linguistics feels like the inverse of the two.

In short, we now talk in person like we talk on the internet. 

Historically, linguistic variations have been geographically anchored. Now? With the development of the internet, especially Twitter and TikTok, any new slang can be spread around the world almost instantaneously. Differences in dialect now say more about which generation you belong to than anything else. 

Kyla Scanlon’s latest newsletter Why We Don’t Trust Each Other Anymore, conveniently plopped into my inbox the Monday after my  chairlift ride and felt as resonant as ever:

Whether it be things like “TikTok speak” where you are forced to speak in short snippers to catch those gleaming droplets of attention or memes, which support the idea that pictures are indeed a thousand words, we are losing something in between the word and the meaning of the word.

“Something in between the word and the meaning of the word” — in other words (no pun intended), the generational gap feels more apparent than ever. 

We rely on words to convey meaning so when I say the word “calculator” or “desk” you know exactly what I’m referencing (simple enough, right?). But what happens when a new chapter of slang starts and evolves so rapidly that meaning gets lost in translation?

Take, for example, the phrase out of pocket. Like most Millennials, I’ll use that phrase when I’m about to be out of office, or just generally unreachable— ”I’ll be out of pocket on a backpacking trip”. Ask any Gen-Z’er for their definition, and they’ll probably laugh

Couple that rapid evolution with the fact that distraction is the fastest growing sector of the culture economy — there’s no shortage of distraction, and therein, no shortage of words and new slang. 

Now, before you write me off as a geriatric Millennial, hear me out. Language, particularly English, has evolved for as long as it’s existed. The words we use to speak to each other have evolved over and through time. Boomers are credited for the word “shroom”, Gen-X is largely responsible for “dude” and Millennial slang coincides directly with the rapid rise of technology over the last 20-30 years, with “google” and “tweet” becoming verbs. Each generation’s evolution of English plays an important role in the cultural and technological time that generation is born into. 

While the implications of Gen Z’s linguistics at large are open-ended, the takeaways are anything but: 

Cut the bullshit with Gen-Z. Don’t speak the same slang as Gen-Z if it’s not authentically in line with your brand voice. They don’t want traditional gimmicky sales pitches just as much as they don’t want an oxford comma. At the end of the day, they have a far more vested interest in a company’s values and what they stand for. 

While we see grammar and language evolving and changing with this unique generation, we also see white space opening up — a space to be more authentic as a brand. 

  • Capitalize on that space and be vocal about what your brand believes in and stands for, and most importantly, create meaningful connection between your brand and target audience. 

  • If your brand language is “cheugy” for now, there will be a new set of slang before we know it. Your time is better spent fine-tuning your brand essence and staying true to who you are than constantly trying to adapt to what’s cool for now (operative words: for now). 

On top of that, younger generations have always been the ones to drive language change — and then grow old and criticize the next generation for creating the same change. I’ll grab my popcorn and wait to see when Generation Alpha comes up with.

"Its not wether you get knocked down"


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If you could be anyone you wanted to be, who would you be? How exciting is it to think that you could start a new chapter in your life in a whole new world? Without the limitations of the physical world and human constructs that have been created around you?

Well that’s where the Metaverse comes in. There are whole new worlds being created out there that will remove the physical limitations of life and allow you to chase your dreams and be who you want to be.

Sounds pretty exciting right? Let’s dig in a little more to understand what this might look like.


Simply put, the Metaverse is the convergence of all the digital things you do online into one virtual experience.

In a sense, it already exists. We sit on Zoom calls, research on the web, talk on social media, buy things on Amazon, watch streaming events and online video, and play games. The Metaverse is already here.

But think of tying all of it together and removing some of the limitations that still exist in your physical life when you access the web.

But how is this all of the sudden now possible?

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