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This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

HeartBurn Kid: Not sure what index(es) this one fits in; little help?

Tanto: Script Speak, maybe?

Corahs Uncle: I was thinking of putting it under Commercials Tropes, due to the strange spellings of many product names. I once saw a 1950s print ad for Heinz baked beans with the slogan, "Beanz Buildz Kidz!".

Ununnilium: Language Tropes, too. ...oh, it's already in there.

Morgan Wick: It will be noted that cooler letters tend to be sharp and pointy. Why this does not extend to the number 4 is anybody's guess. Um... how would this trope even apply to the number 4, other than the standard leetspeak way of using the numeral in place of "for"?

HeartBurn Kid: Come to think of it, I have seen "4" subsititued for "for" in that Xtreme Kool Letterz style. And "2" for "to", as well.

seth: So it's far from exempt. However i am yet to see the M, N or W used in this fashion so not all pointy letters are subject. Just the ones that can be used for abbreviation's or can be easily switched with another.

Phartman: It seems that sharpness of enunciation is more important. The letters X, Z and (arguably) K also aren't used as often as the other 23 letters of the alphabet, so rarity may have something to do with it.

Oh, I've also heard some English teachers say that students are handing in assignments written in "leet" speak nowadays. Good Lord, I want to be an English teacher just so I can flunk the little bastards for that. On the other hand, these free-falling academic standards mean that mediocre guys like me will look smarter by default, so maybe they should just keep lowering the bar.

Ununnilium: That's right! After all, no youth movement in the history of world culture has ever had its slang leak into inappropriate places!

...meh, my bitterness is showing. It's just that people have always decried the dumb things kids do as the incipient fall of civilization.

Phartman: Except that until now, a kid would get flunked for handing in a paper written in it. I guess I hid that a little too well in the subtext, so I can't really blame you for missing it.

It's a shame that I'm only 23 and already on the "old" end of the generation gap. I tell you, the kids these days with their baggy clothes, their portable electronics, their rap music, their hardcore pornography, their Pat Boone, and their damnable horseless carriages...

Ununnilium: One word: Ebonics.

Phartman: Oh yeah, I remember when they still called it that. But where was I? Ah, yes; the kids these days. I tell you, with all their 50 Cent and their iPods and their Pokey-man and their Dexy's Midnight Runners...

Coolnut: I've been thinking. Does "F" -> "PH" also count for this trope? (e.g. Phish, Phantasy Star, Tales of Phantasia)

Phartman: Gee, I hope not...

Scrounge: I can't believe we phorgot that... *Hides from thrown objects*

Ruthie A: I too find "leet" rather annoying...and I'm only sixteen! I once saw someone use the number four for the word for on a high school student government poster. It made me rather angry. If I ever see something like that on a real political poster I will most likely lose a great deal of faith in my country's electoral process.

Air Of Mystery: |-|0\/\/ |)4R3 j00 /\/\0C|< 73|-| 1337/\/355? Seriously, though, leetspeak should be kept on the internet and off actual proper things. It's The New Rock & Roll, after all.

Kenb215 What about leading a term with a lowercase letter i, e.g. iCarly?

O.S.I: The letters X, Z and (arguably) K also aren't used as often as the other 23 letters of the alphabet, so rarity may have something to do with it. Agreed. When you rank the letters in descending order of koolnezz (X, Z, K, Y, A, M, R, V, U, S, Q, O, L, I, W, N, F, C, J, T, D, H, G, B, E, P), the list is definitely biased towards the lesser used back half of the alphabet. (A notable exception is A, which has a dramatic vertical symmetry, a clean, linear aesthetic, and a connotation of success that helps it to stand with the more exotic letters.)


Prfnoff: Removed questionable subitems asserting that "the X-Men Started the Xtreme Kool Letterz craze" and "Beanz Meanz Heinz" is "of course just a coincidence which predates Xtreme Kool Letterz by a long way". These comments need a better historical justification than "even without facts I'll still argue it".

Dark Phoenix: I'd like to point out that the K thing in KDE is in fact convention, not an attempt to cash in on using Xtreme lettering; the theory is that using the K's in the programs help people identify the apps as KDE apps. KDE itself was named in this way because at the time the project was started, there was already a CDE (the Common Desktop Environment, which was the first major UNIX desktop environment), and the project founder actually wanted to call it the Cool Desktop Environment. That may fit (since he just changed "Cool" to "Kool"), but I dunno if the rest would...

bluefireglow: Yeah, I realize it's not an attempt to make the applications seem cooler or hipper or anything (and it is in fact useful for identifying KDE apps, as you mentioned), but I still think it kinda fits the trope because the letter substitution is still there...if someone disagrees, though, they can remove it.

Korodzik: Removed the CD Projekt example, since it wasn't an example of this.