We have become a multi-screen culture. Is this true? Millions of people now watch their favorite television programs on their smartphones and read their favorite books on a tablet. We were told that the world would change one day and resemble something from out of a science fiction film. I’m still waiting for my rocket pack aren’t you? This transformation, some computer geeks may have seen it coming, was unexpected. The publishing world has suffered the most. Newspapers are going out of business. Magazines are converting to digital format and books are becoming electronic clones of themselves.
The strangest change is the popularity of using a tiny keyboard on our cell phones to send messages. It is called texting, a dreaded practice created by the average impulsive teenager, who would rather communicate with shortened words and cryptic symbols than with actual written or spoken words. The use of abbreviating words has long been used in personalized correspondence. This form of semantics, the use of three or more letters that signify words, has overwhelmed our personalized cards and notes with much preference. It is common practice. For all of us who need a refresher, this post is written just for you.
Attn: (attention) – this abbreviation is used to identify a particular recipient. It means that this letter is intended for you. The shortened form – for the attention of (FAO) – is also used to direct a letter to someone in particular.
P.S (postscript) – added after the main body of a letter and signature, this abbreviation is used when you have additional information to write. This can be any length. Add another letter (P.P.S) and you can repeat the process all over again.
P.P (per procuration) – is used to imply that someone is acting on your behalf. In this case, someone else has signed a letter on your behalf.
R.S.V.P – Another common abbreviation used on invitations to signify the attendance of an event. This shortened form asks the recipient: will you attend the event in question?
P.T.O – please turn over – use this abbreviation when your letter is packed with information
B.Y.O.B – bring your own bottle – used on invitations, this abbreviation signifies the obvious, you must bring your own drinks to the party.