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From a strictly functionalist point of view, I think a lot of the modified english used online is the result of balancing the multiple tasks online chatters, and especially online gamers, take on. For instance, in the MMORPG World of Warcraft that I played for about a year, one finds quickly that fighting opponents while communicating with your team and eating your baloney sandwich IRL (in real life)is a task best accomplished with acronyms and shorthand slang. Upon initial entrance into the game world, the language you see in the chat box appears as pure gibberish:

LF2M RFK need meat shield and DPS PST 4 inv
= Looking for 2 more players to enter the dungeon Razorfen Kraul. I need a warrior [meat shield] and any class that can dish out high Damage Per Second. Please send Tell [private message] for an invitation to my party.

The learning curve is steep and asking questions is, of course, a virtual faux pas, but once you are in the know, the benefits of the modified language and acronyms are great.

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