Because Internet by Gretchen McCulloch

Because Internet delved into how (American) English evolved with the internet. The book had a good concept and a good start. I was amused to learn what kind of internet person (there are different waves and subgroups) I was. McCulloch also tackled internet slang (up until the book was published in 2019), which was quite entertaining: although I’ve personally noticed the evolution of LOL throughout my time on the internet, it felt official having read a linguist’s discussion of the same observations. The book also talked about memes, which brought back memories of old favorites: bad luck Brian and overly attached girlfriend.

While I really wanted to love this book, I found myself dozing off as I read. The concepts were very interesting to me, but I felt like I was reading something too… academic. (Flashback to the times in college when I would suddenly wake up and realize that I had fallen asleep while reading class materials…) Nevertheless I finished reading Because Internet because I was genuinely curious about the topic. Perhaps I simply didn’t fit into Because Internet’s true target audience, but should I find a similar book, I would probably pick it up and try again.

The book had a lot of potential to be amazing, but it fell short in its execution. I’ll probably read her shorter works when I’m in the mood. (Here’s a list of her published works!)

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