I can has lolnews?

What you see here is a screen shot from the online version of the economist. It’s a replication of a story from the print edition about the effects of the recent hurricanes on Cuba. Note the caption on the picture. Is there some Briticism I’m missing here in which woz translates to were? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

Gustav and Ike wuz here

Don’t get me wrong, I throw around lolspeak* among my friends as much as the next 30-something geeky girl. But there’s a time and place for everything. Somehow this doesn’t strike me as quite the right tone to take when discussing Cuba’s ability to recover from a natural disaster without the help of outside aid. For the moment let’s leave aside whether this kind of light-hearted non-grammatical play with the English language is ever really appropriate in a serious news publication (that isn’t covering something related to the language phenomenon itself). This caption seems inappropriately light and cheerful for a story about destruction. It’s like approaching someone you’re about to take off life-support and saying “Oh hai, I is pulling the plug.” Well, maybe that’s a bad example. But think of a morbid situation and caption it appropriately. Ok, I’ll admit it. I’m just irked because I was holding out for a story on the current U.S. economic situation with the caption “I can has government bailout.”

*If you have no idea what I’m going on about here, get thee to the lolcats page and don’t forget to check out the cat that started it all (well, presumably).

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