Snarky, aren’t we?
More people are snarky than ever before thanks to blogging. Some people even take pride in this manner of speech. After all, this type of verbal expression allows bloggers to take great liberty with their opinions. It is virtually becoming a literary phenomenon . . . in the blogosphere, at least. A search of the web will find snarky mommas, snarky literary agents, snarky gossip, snarky tofu, those who profess to be randomly snarky, and even snarky entrepreneurs.
What does it mean to be snarky? Merriam-Webster online tells us that snarky dialect is sarcastic, impertinent, or irreverent in tone or manner; meant to annoy or irritate. Snarky is one of those words that defines itself by the way it sounds. You can’t really even say the word without it without sounding, well, snarky. Try it.
But snarky isn’t merely about tone of voice, it is about what is said. It’s difficult to convey tone of voice on the web, so we rely on other certain things to express ourselves. We can use flowery forms of flattery with both word and symbol if we are trying to be obsequious, we can SHOUT, or we can resort to sarcasm and cynicism when we are in a don’t mess with me kind of mood. Snarky is blunt, critical, and can be construed as rude; although often it is simply meant as sassy dry humor.
Why do people write snarky? Because they can. Reading snarkiness is much more easily tolerated than hearing it. So snarky bloggers are brave. They might not ever have the guts to say what they are thinking to your face, but if you come over to their blog you might get yourself a good old fashioned dose of snark. But don’t worry, their snark is often worse than their bite.