Speak Up

Up to Speed

By HAROON AHMED | September 2022

In today’s fast-paced world, the internet and the rest of the online communication means have become a fact of life. Journalist Mohiuddin Zia Siddiqi has done a great job by compiling a small dictionary that explains the words and terms used in social media and the need for understanding the meanings of these terms in alphabetical order. He also suggests more colour to be added to daily life.

In addition, the book lists more words and idioms that make daily conversation or even writing e-mails a happy task.

Speak Up is divided into five chapters - Social Media and Internet Vocabulary, Abbreviations, Smart Words, Most Used Idioms and Quotations. The chapter on Social Media and Internet Vocabulary brings into light from darkness many a term that had baffled people and there was always a struggle to find out what these terms meant in the context of computerese, the technical language and jargon used in computing and computer science. The subsequent chapter on Abbreviations is helpful to those who find it difficult to decipher messages, especially SMSs.

The third chapter containing smart words and their meanings is also valuable because it puts into focus a lingo that is fast gaining ownership in casual conversation - or even other communication - and must be adopted by people who wish to swim with the current.

The fourth and fifth chapters move beyond social media terminologies and prompt those interested into using idioms and benefiting from popular quotations.

Why the dictionary is titled ‘Speak Up’ is quite mystifying. However, as you flip through the pages of this indispensible volume, you discover the treasures of a language that transcends the generational divide with great ease and answers many questions that have remained unanswered so far.

Perhaps the overall size of the book could have been much reduced to make it more ‘transportable’. Use of smaller font sizes and lesser illustrations could be handy solutions. But then, the author knows best!