An US company has claimed to invent the Sarcasm mark. It is selling a software at US $1.99 which can be installed on a computer so that the user can use it in their emails and letter writing. This is how the sarcasm mark looks like:
Okay the idea is great! It is a pretty useful punctuation mark to use. After all, nowadays our languages are often peppered with sarcasm and irony. And oh yes there is also a irony mark somewhere in the vast internet but that is a story for another day.
Coming back to the sarcasm mark, however this company is slightly off the mark when it claims to be the first one to come out with it. Back in 2001, these couple came out with their own version of it but of course being individuals without marketing power, their mark soon lost its marker. But I do like their solution and that is to use the tilde ~. Why? Because this one is found on all the computer and no need to pay.
In 2004, another writer called for the creation of the sarcasm mark. His proposal: ¡ the inverted exclamation mark. Now this one, people may get confused with the letter ‘i’ so it is not as good as the earlier one in 2001 but hey it still 1.99 less!
Anyway, just an example of how to use the Sarcasm Mark.
I love my country. It is so generous ~ ¡ (take your pick of the 3)
It reacts so fast to the news of the Haiti earthquake and together with so many countries, stepped forward to generously donate money to aid the victims ~ ¡
The list of donors who contributed cash for the Haiti earthquake victims
European Union $4.3m
South Korea $1m
Singapore $50,000.00 (big applause please) ~ ¡
Source: Straits Time 15 January 2010
For the full list of donors – refer here. You will notice that one country’s big donation ~ ¡ is not even mentioned. Wonder why har ~ ¡