Punctuation gets sarcastic

You heard it here first: a new punctuation mark called the ‘SarcMark' is set to change the way we read and write

It’s hard to convey emotions in print, short of SHOUTING, emoticons, or using the dreaded abbreviations best left to texting teenagers. So could the new ‘SarcMark’ be the answer to our cynical prayers?

Sold as a punctuation mark for sarcasm, the ‘SarcMark’ is the brainchild of Michigan-based company Sarcasm Inc, pegged as being as big a household name as Tesco and Google.

Used in place of traditional punctuation such as an exclamation point or full stop, the SarcMark – resembling a back-to-front figure 6 wth a dot in the middle – was invented to convey irony and eradicate confusion over tone when words are written down rather than spoken.

The SarkMark would be used whenever you write the opposite of what you actually mean, for example, ‘I really love January (SarcMark)’.

It’s not the first time such punctuation has been suggested. The French poet Alcanter de Brahm first proposed a backward facing question-mark to indicate irony in the late nineteenth century, and more recently US writer Josh Greenman proposed using an upside down exclamation mark.

However it is the first time a punctuation mark has been designed and marketed specifically for the purpose of sarcasm.

The SarcMark is available to download for just $1.99 (£1.20), which is a small price to pay for clear communication.

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