If I Were King of the Internet, I Would Mandate the Percontation Point⸮

 

Satire. Irony. Sarcasm. The written word seldom conveys these things well enough to tell them from someone’s making a serious statement or proposal. (This has even been codified and is now known as Poe’s Law.) Distinguishing serious from ironic is a very old problem, and one that was solved in about 1580. It was in that decade that Henry Denham, an English printer, came up with a solution. His idea was to have a new mark of punctuation that would distinguish when someone was not serious. That mark was the percontation point, and it looked like this: ⸮.

Thus, were I the King of the Internet, you would be mandated to use the percontation point⸮ It would probably be the only punctuation available to such publications as The Onion or The Babylon Bee. And maybe some mistakes would no longer be made:

 

Are there any interesting marks of punctuation, real or proposed, that you have come across? If you were King (or Queen or Pony Princess, whatever) of the Internet, what rules would you impose?

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  1. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Arahant:

    Thus, were I the King of the Internet, you would be mandated to use the percontation point⸮ It would probably be the only punctuation available to such publications as The Onion or The Babylon Bee. And maybe some mistakes would no longer be made:

     

    They’re Leftists. We already knew they are gullible.

    • #1
  2. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    I just make my remarks.  If people understand, great!  If they don’t, that’s OK, too.

    • #2
  3. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    The Singularity has been reached. Satire and Reality are one.

    • #3
  4. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Stina (View Comment):

    The Singularity has been reached. Satire and Reality are one.

    So it seems. I am trying to bring us back from the brink.

    • #4
  5. SkipSul Inactive
    SkipSul
    @skipsul

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Stina (View Comment):

    The Singularity has been reached. Satire and Reality are one.

    So it seems. I am trying to bring us back from the brink.

    A futile task.

    • #5
  6. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    A futile task.

    Especially with the number of people pushing us over in the other direction.

    • #6
  7. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    This is part of the Group Writing project for September. October will be even more fun with the writing prompt of: It was a dark and stormy night…

    • #7
  8. SkipSul Inactive
    SkipSul
    @skipsul

    Arahant (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):
    A futile task.

    Especially with the number of people pushing us over in the other direction.

    When one attempts satire and mockery, but this is misread as an aspirational goal by those one is attempting to mock, one is missing the target.  Humor at its most noble takes the wind out of our overpuffed sails – it is a corrective and a brake on our passions.  But it requires at least a modicum of humility to be present in the target.  The nihilists on the Left have largely stripped themselves of this.

    • #8
  9. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Reagan
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential
    @GLDIII

    Satire or clairvoyant? 

    • #9
  10. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    GLDIII Temporarily Essential (View Comment):
    Satire or clairvoyant? 

    Delicious.

    • #10
  11. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Reagan
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential
    @GLDIII

    Arahant (View Comment):

    GLDIII Temporarily Essential (View Comment):
    Satire or clairvoyant?

    Delicious.

    Perhaps, but not at the expense of 60 million lost souls. 

    • #11
  12. Richard Fulmer Inactive
    Richard Fulmer
    @RichardFulmer

    Mama don’t want no promiscuous percontation ’round here.

    • #12
  13. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Richard Fulmer (View Comment):

    Mama don’t want no promiscuous percontation ’round here.

    No, no, no … it goes Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here.

    Okay … four for nothing. Arahant, come in at the bridge …

    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here
    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here
    We don’t care what Mama don’t allow
    We gonna promicuously percontinate anyhow
    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here

     

    • #13
  14. Richard Fulmer Inactive
    Richard Fulmer
    @RichardFulmer

    Percival (View Comment):

    Richard Fulmer (View Comment):

    Mama don’t want no promiscuous percontation ’round here.

    No, no, no … it goes Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here.

    Okay … four for nothing. Arahant, come in at the bridge …

    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here
    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here
    We don’t care what Mama don’t allow
    We gonna promicuously percontinate anyhow
    Mama don’t allow no promiscuous percontation around here

    This is why I keep you around.  You take an almost funny post of mine and make it hilarious.  

    • #14
  15. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Old song.

    • #15
  16. KentForrester Coolidge
    KentForrester
    @KentForrester

    Wouldn’t such a mark give up the game?   Satire works best when the reader gradually understands that he’s been taken in. 

    • #16
  17. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    Wouldn’t such a mark give up the game? Satire works best when the reader gradually understands that he’s been taken in.

    Apparently not, Kent. Some people still wouldn’t get it.

    • #17
  18. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Arahant: If you were King (or Queen or Pony Princess, whatever) of the Internet, what rules would you impose?

    Make Gopher Great Again. Actually, I don’t remember much about it and only used it a few times. I do remember fingering Coke machines.

    • #18
  19. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    I do remember fingering Coke machines.

    😨

    • #19
  20. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    I do remember fingering Coke machines.

    😨

    Interesting how definitions change over time. From Wikipedia:

    “Prior to the finger program, the only way to get this information was with a who program that showed IDs and terminal line numbers (the server’s internal number of the communication line, over which the user’s terminal is connected) for logged-in users. Earnest named his program after the idea that people would run their fingers down the who list to find what they were looking for.

    The term “finger” had, in the 1970s, a connotation of “to snitch”: this made “finger” a good reminder/mnemonic to the semantic of the UNIX finger command (a client in the protocol context).”

    The Beatles knew of that other meaning with their Penny Lane lyrics so it was around at some level.

    • #20
  21. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    Half the enjoyment of sarcasm, irony, and satire is the subsequent mocking of those who don’t get it.  But hey, your punctuation proposal was like totally brilliant and awesome ⸮.

    • #21
  22. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    I could not find a Percontation Point in Word’s directory of symbols to be inserted.  But I found this: ‽

    (It is a combined exclamation point and question mark.)

    • #22
  23. The Scarecrow Thatcher
    The Scarecrow
    @TheScarecrow

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    I could not find a Percontation Point in Word’s directory of symbols to be inserted. But I found this: ‽

    (It is a combined exclamation point and question mark.)

    I think that’s called an interrobang.

    • #23
  24. Boss Mongo Member
    Boss Mongo
    @BossMongo

    Arahant: Are there any interesting marks of punctuation, real or proposed, that you have come across?

    Hey, man.  You stymied me with your interrabangabong, Or whatever.

    • #24
  25. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    Wouldn’t such a mark give up the game? Satire works best when the reader gradually understands that he’s been taken in.

    Apparently not, Kent. Some people still wouldn’t get it.

    What’s not best about that?

    • #25
  26. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    The role of king is usually hereditary.  Tell us more about your children, Arahant.  If your situation is like that of George Washington, would there be a peaceful transfer of power when your term is up? 

    • #26
  27. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Tell us more about your children, Arahant.

    • #27
  28. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    The role of king is usually hereditary. Tell us more about your children, Arahant. If your situation is like that of George Washington, would there be a peaceful transfer of power when your term is up?

    • #28
  29. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Tell us more about your children, Arahant.

     What  is the cat’s position on the percontation point?

    • #29
  30. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
     What is the cat’s position on the percontation point?

    It’s too sharp and pointy to sleep on.

    • #30
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