They find this angry and dismissive

Photo by William Iven on Unsplash

It should have been clear that young people perceive the word “OK” as an insult when the saying, “OK Boomer” first showed up. Yet, I have to admit it came as a surprise when I came across an article that discusses the many problems associated with the use of “OK” during texting.

I thought the word, “OK” was completely inoffensive. It’s another way to say yes. But if you are under the age of 40, you may have a completely different take on it.

It turns out, young people may find a quick “OK” response in a text as a dismissive insult. And if you see happen to see an “OK” coming from them, you should be suspicious that it may have been sent with sarcastic intent.

The question arises, what should we be texting if not “OK” when we want to express agreement? According to my extensive online research, the term millennials and Gen Z prefer is “kk.”

I had never heard of this. So I did what I always do when confronted with new slang I’m unfamiliar with. I looked it up in Urban Dictionary where I found the following definition for “kk”.

OK, cool. closest to gotcha or sure in conversation. very similar to roger in CB usage.
Importantly, using “kk” instead of “Okay” avoids any suggestion of sarcasm or doubt. There are lots of ways of inflecting Okay. kk is just pure acknowledgement; your message is received. And it is fast to type.

I had no idea. But it says it right there. Using “Okay” is a “suggestion of sarcasm or doubt.”

I’m starting to think anyone under the age of 40 is speaking a different language than the rest of us.

I hate to be the one to point this out, but millennials, you’ve got a terrible reputation with being overly sensitive, and this isn’t helping.

In the actual dictionary, “OK” is defined as:

in assenting or agreeing also ˈō-ˌkā variants: or okay or less commonly ok

Millennials and Gen Z, you can’t expect the older generations to have a clue they’re being offensive by doing this. And older generations, maybe we should try a little harder to understand the younger ones. How many workplace conflicts have occurred over the innocent “OK” text with half the party not knowing there was a conflict?

And vice versa, how many millennials have texted an “OK” in anger? Only to be received happily on the other end by an older person thinking everything was going great. Most likely responding with a resounding, “OK”.

I must admit, I would feel kind of silly texting “kk”. I’m a little too old and trying to keep up with the cool kids is no longer cool. It would be like my grandpa in the 90’s telling me that grandma was “all that and a bag of chips.” Definitely not cool.

I know that it is hard to convey tone of voice when you are texting. This is why I always try to text with lots of emojis and exclamation points in the hopes of showing my friendliness and easy-going nature. However, it may be time to draw the line at “kk” and finally admit I’m getting old. Not boomer old, just Gen X old.

I am also concerned about giving boomers yet another rule to remember when texting. Their texting attempts are already mercilessly mocked by the young.

Poor boomers, they didn’t grow up with this technology. They are trying. But have you ever tried to text with a boomer? I have and it’s not always pretty. There’s a lot of typos and strange autocorrects. Sometimes they sign their names at the end of it like they’re signing a letter.

Millennials and Gen Z, please understand, it may feel the world is out to get you, but the truth is, most of us are just bumbling around trying to get by the best we can. When we respond, “OK”, we mean affirmative. It’s not meant to be an underhanded insult.

And boomers, maybe just stop trying to text at all. It’s not going well.

That was a joke. I know the boomers can handle it with their many years of developing thick skins. I try to refrain from insulting millennials too much as I don’t want to add to their troubles. After all, they’ve probably just received an “OK” text from their boss that is causing some degree of psychological distress.

That was a joke too, so everyone chill out.

OK?

Another joke. 😉😉😉 See these emojis? 🙂🙂🙂 See how friendly I am?

If you enjoy reading about generational differences as much as I enjoy pointing them out, you can check out my article about the unfortunate naming of Generation X as “the Karen Generation.”



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