Three Little Words

dictionaryNo new Lexicon to add to the mix today, this piece is about just three little words.  I Love You.  I Am Sorry.  I Hate That.  Leave Me Alone.  I Am Done.  Here It Comes.  I Am Sad.  I Am Happy.  Just depends on how you use them.

About a month ago I lost what I considered (up and until that time) a good friend over three little words.  We were having a spirited off line debate on a issue, and after the third time trying to explain my position, I just gave up and said … I Am Done.  And that was it, from that point on, the friendship eroded and fell off the radar.  From that point on contact was cut off and there were no more exchanges.

Maybe I need to buy a copy of ToneCheck?

There is a feature available for certain email software programs called ToneCheck. This works much like spell-check, except rather than correcting your misspelling of “recommend” and overlooking the fact that you wrote “you’re” when you meant to write “your.” ToneCheck highlights content which exceeds some kind of preset filter for negative (or exceedingly positive) emotions such as anger, sadness, resentment, elation, etc.

ToneCheck was released as a plug-in with Microsoft Outlook, and will “allow for personal variations in tone, gauge a sentence’s level of emotional ambiguity and offer suggestions for revision.” A few have suggested that “the tone of my posts” should be a little less intense and so forth, so in my case, it might be a good idea.

Like most Americans “I have the right to remain silent” but seldom exercise that right.  Which of course often brings me grief from the word police or some administrators/moderators.  It might be a good idea for me to purchase this thing and try it out … Who knows, might cut some of you some slack in the process.

As they say …. “You deserve a break today.”

It could be a good deal and then it might be a total waste of money.  I can’t decide if this is really terrific, or laughingly absurd. We’ve all sent an email we’ve almost immediately wished we could un-send (the only thing I miss about AOL), we’ve all cringed at our own words when they come back to us at the bottom of a reply, many of us have probably adopted the if-I-write-it-when-I’m-upset-angry-bitterly-disappointed-resentful-stark-raving-mad-I’ll-wait-for-24-hours-before-sending-it policy.

I guess the assistance of an objective “third party” giving us a virtual nudge and asking “are you sure you want to say it that way?” wouldn’t be a bad thing. I could always choose to ignore it. Maybe someone should develop a real-life version, something along the size of a digital recorder, which we can speak into for feedback before saying what we REALLY think at the next posting, email or meeting.

Anyone want to “chip in” and help ME purchase a working copy?  (Hahahhahahaha.  I think I just hurt myself!)  

In the end I guess it comes down to one thing.  “Can we really expect a software program to be able to recognize the subtleties and intricacies of adult communication?”  

The answer to that one is of course anyone’s guess.


If you would like to see ToneCheck working, please click on this link here.