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Google just published what they call Language Graph of the Web
It’s interesting to compare these graphs to Susan Herring’s and Ewa Callahan’s research on Livejournal we heard about at F3.


Those of you who are interested in language change (and aren’t we all?) might also find a neighbouring field of language evolution studies worth attention. I’ve just written a popular article about a recently published study.

A new seminar has started at Vinogradov Russian Language Institute in Moscow: “Проблемы кодификации норм современного русского языка” (Problems of codification of norms of the modern Russian language). Seminar leaders are Alexei Shmelev and Yelena Beshenkova, some materials are available on the webpage.
It is interesting if their purpose is just theoretical research or some practical results — like new reference materials — as well.

Some clever guys in the US have devised something what they call a new punctuation mark (sic!). SarcMark is meant to “emphasize a sarcastic phrase, sentence or message”.
The mark is hardly going to have any success, but it has triggered a very interesting discussion on the LanguageLog (see comments for different ways of expressing sarcasm, link to a nice commentary by Geoff Nunberg and other interesting stuff).
I personally cannot help but ~admire~ the valiant breach of at least two communication principles: first, marking sarcasm so explicitly seems to be somewhat opposite to the idea of sarcasm; second, paying for a language unit/device is very opposite to the idea of language itself.

What does the word реже mean in this quotation?


ххх: привет Тоха, заходи реже в л2, там сейчас замес, МЯСО!
ууу: да не Тоха я – я ОТЕЦ
ххх: Да я знаю, что ты папко, хуле, с таким опытом и шмотом и я был бы папко! Заходи реже, нужно организовать пачку!!ато тут все тупят
ууу: так я не умею, даже не знаю как заходить в этот ваш л2…
ххх: бляяяя, Тоха, ты чё сёдня накуреный???

Not “seldomer” at all. It’s a distorted резче, which is a comparative of резко, which has a slang meaning “quickly, immediately”. Here it actually means “immediately, right now”.

Some other words might also need explanation:

л2 — Lineage 2, a popular MMORPG;

замес — bloody battle;

папка, отец (note the interlocutors fail to understand each other when using this word) — as far as I understand, an experienced high-level player, probably there is a more specific meaning;

шмот — weapon, armour, accessories;

пачка — probably a squad or something like that.

It’s quite easy to understand where do all these slang signantia and signata come from. That is not the case with реже.

UPD: I was so dumb as to forget about the cases близко-ближе, низко-ниже, узко-уже (thanks Martin!). Obviously, реже is formed by analogy to them.

However, the pragmatic problem still exists: not only this word is ambiguous, it’s meaning is almost opposite to the meaning of its homonym. One could expect that the speakers would avoid such ambiguity, but, obviously, they don’t. They don’t even care about the fact that реже-seldomer is more popular than реже-immediately and thus probably would be the default choice of a hearer facing this ambiguity. The context determines everything.

Here are some more examples (I yandexed for «давай реже»):


В очереди передо мной стоит девочка лет восьми. Очередь продвигается медленно и стоящая в метре от нее мама произносит: “Ты, коза, давай реже! Я опаздываю бля!”  Не хватало только пальцев веером и дешевой тонкой сигаретки в зубах, причем мама была не молодой.


ПродУУУУУУУУУУУУУУУУ­У!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!­!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Давай реже пишы дальше , я хочу продуууууууууууу!!!­!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!­!!!!!!!!


и де раздачя нетупи давай реже)))


Фаенька: *БЛОНДИНОЧКА*, блииин, повезло. наверна тоже свойство блонди, точняк завидую примите к себе плиииииииииииз


*БЛОНДИНОЧКА*: Фаенька, ты сильно то не завидуй, а то сглазишь


Фаенька: *БЛОНДИНОЧКА*, вот именно поэтому давай реже принимай к себе


-Сашуль,давай реже открывай, мне надо в туалет за прокладкой.


Мы все пародии на людей,так,что….
Давай реже приходи и погнали играть в футбол.

(Note that here it is really possible to understand реже as less often. But the speaker still doesn’t care)


Ну-ну,ну-ну.Давай реже так хочу пару новостей и фоток добавить.


а то контра заебала уже давай реже сервак включай!!!

(=”I am fed up with Counterstrike, switch on the Lineage 2 server faster!”