Browse all

The meaning of "speak in cursive" on TikTok

A new day, a new trend among teens

The meaning of speak in cursive on TikTok A new day, a new trend among teens

«Speaking in cursive was very much on trend last year», Defhouse's Davide Moccia told us when we asked him what "speaking in cursive" meant. The writer of this article had never even heard of the expression until now, although, it must be said, during a quick search through Google, news about the trend dated back to October 2021, four months ago - which means the trend had been going on long before that. As of today, the #cursive hashtag on TikTok has 14 million views, the most recent videos date back to a few weeks ago at most, a sign that someone is still having fun with it, but they go back at least two years. The fact is that in the personal cognitive bubble in which the writer finds himself, this "speaking in cursive" had never arrived and therefore an explanation was necessary.«It's a mostly ironic linguistic bent that you get by contracting your facial muscles, or at least that's how I do it,»Davide explained. «You close all the accents in every word. I think it stems from the Milanese dialect and that's pretty much where a new language came from».

@true_trash Che nervi #neiperte suono originale - True_Trash

Digging further into online sites reveals a probable origin of the success of the idiom: the sixth season of the reality show Il Collegio on Rai 1 during an episode of which an argument took place that then went viral online - what in the circles of fans of the program has become known as the "cookie argument". During this quarrel, one of the girls involved can be heard speaking in a very pronounced Lombard cadence that was later picked up, we don't know how directly, by another tiktoker, Giulia Caselli, who made it properly popular. Like a straw fire, the trend flared up and began to die out, as Davide told us, over the course of a year.

This doesn't just apply to TikTok but also to music: in an episode of the Muschio Selvaggio podcast, Fedez pointed out to Sangiovanni his "cursive" speech, including Tha Supreme in the list of singers who use this style. Another example vaguely similar to cursive speech was seen at Sanremo with Blanco, Madame, Rkomi, and Yuman - though one could trace the fascination with intense diphthongation (when vowel sounds unnaturally lengthen) back to artists like Amy Winehouse or Selena Gomez.

@davidepapasidero Rispondi a @tibedj cantiamo in corsivo #perte #neiperte #fypシ #fyp #viral #corsivo #effettivocali #canto #cantante suono originale - PAPASIDERO

To be sure, many sources agree in identifying the origin of the saying to a 2009 tweetin which the Baltimore comedian @TRACKDROPPA wrote: «Voice so smooth its like I'm singing in cursive», referring to no one really knows what. The spoken "cursive" then took hold in many pop music songs, even below the traditional radar of international pop music, appearing, as Davide Papasidero pointed out on TikTok, even in the singing program Amici, signaling the entrance of the slang in the Italian mainstream pop culture.