Here’s a piece of information that may or may not significantly affect your life. It’s LOL’s birthday! Not that there’s any cake for anyone, but according to linguist Ben Zimmer the abbreviation for laugh out loud, LOL a.k.a our excuse to get out of conversations is now 25 years old. It first appeared in the May 1989 issue of an American newsletter called FidoNet.
Other words that share their birthday with LOL are BRB, BTW, AFK and the adorable alternative to the grand LMAO, LMTO… T for Tush.
Wayne Pearson’s claim for coining the term LOL is LOLworthy itself. University of Calgary holds account of what he said, here
. He said he first wrote LOL on ViewLine but it truly became popular when it spread like wildfire on then popular online service called GEnie, which had a lot of bot-controlled chatrooms.
Of course there is no way to confirm who came up with the term first, and frankly who cares? No one is directly making money off of it, or is someone? Here is a screenshot of a page
on Fidonet that mentions LOL in May, 1989.
You decide what you want to do on LOL’s birthday. Here is an idea. Every time someone says something really funny, don’t laugh at all. Just say LOL and leave. Pay your homage to your favorite abbreviation. Do your bit, internet people. YSWIDT? Bit. Internet. LOL!