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Category: Leetspeak (13375p34k)
Examples: l31ade, b0ngzi11a, D34dly N1nj4, H34DRU5H, XxSWEETN3SSxX, KLZ g3rMzZ, Wh1TeSn4Ke, R1Pt3h5Y5T3m, xREL3NTL3SSx
"Leet" or "leetspeak" is a coded writing system that originated with computer hackers in the 1980s and has since been adopted as a popular form of communication among online gamers. It includes, but is not limited to, the substitution of numeric digits or special characters for alphabetic letters.
... And just by giving you that definition, we're out of the club. See, the last thing a leetspeaker wants is for the layperson - aka the n00b, aka their Dad - to understand what the hell they're talking about. They've elected themselves into elite, exclusive and altogether imaginary society where only the truly hardcore can mingle.
Ironically, all it usually takes to decipher this secret language is a slight squint of the eyes and a vague tilt of the head. Even more ironically, the gamers who use leetspeak are often the youngest and, therefore, the least experienced.
Dr. Frederiksen: "Exclusion is the foundation of this category. We know something you don't. By setting yourself apart as a member of an exclusive group that has specialized knowledge you can feel different and special. It is sort of the gamer's equivalent of the 'secret handshake.'"
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