A few months ago I came across this fantastic presentation by Lauren Gwane on LOLspeak: ‘I can has language play: Construction of Language and Identity in LOLspeak’ .

More recently, I changed my car insurance – and acquired an ‘Officials Product’ of Meerkovo. The emails letting me know my meerkat’s progress from Meerkovo to the UK were all in ‘Meerkovian’ – even the subject line! “Excite news, your meerkat toy has arrive in UK”

A few days later, Sergei dropped through my door, complete with a Certificate of Authenticness and a letter from Alexsandr.

I can’t hope to match Lauren’s analysis of LOLspeak, but here’s a start on a few things I’ve noticed from the small corpus of emails and letters I have….

“on knowing the difference”

“I hope you got an excellent deal”

“If you are reading this then you have just received exclusive and handsome officials replica”

“It has travelled many miles to be there”

“After final stitched have been carefully applyied (…) the toys are picked up by Postkat and then start the journey to the UK, (although Postkat have worse sense of direction than a penguin in the Sahara). Eventually the toys are taken to St. Petersburg port where they are loaded

“Once in the UK the Royal Mail peoples are make the final delivery to you.”

So the key features of Meerkovian that I can see from this are:

– omission of articles (an, the, a)

– replacement of past & present participles with the infinitive (read, apply, pick)

– addition or omission of plurals (officials, peoples, mile)

– non-standard verb conjugation (Postkat have, are make)


The question is, how long before Lauren tackles Meerkovian? I look forward to that presentation!


First LOLspeak….. now Meerkovian?
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