“LIMES is a pressure group which wants to obliterate the usage of initialisms in the English language. We have branches all around the English-speaking world, although we were founded right here in Royal Leamington Spa,” says Mrs Judith Webb, who is the branch chair of LIMES for South and Central England, “and you should remember that LIMES is an acronym, a word that can be said rather than spelled out when spoken, which is what an initialism is. Things such as the hideous FYI or TTYL. These are all abhorrences in the opinion of our group. I blame that radio presenter Jimmy Young who used to say TTFN at the end of his broadcasts; it was he who started this whole initialism business and we’ve never recovered.”
LIMES believes the use of initialisms is a sign of laziness in our society and that people’s standards of English are declining as a result. Slang has always been a part of language, but now even slang is being initialised. In recent years people have started saying OMG instead of ‘Oh My God’ and FYI instead of ‘For Your Information’. LIMES tries to influence teenagers by encouraging their English teachers to use correct English in class and not to allow initialisms in essays or homework.
LIMES also believes that phone and tablets should not be allowed into schools and that children should communicate by talking rather than via social media, especially when they are in the same room. Bertha Saunders is from the LIMES branch in Carlisle: “We have this strange situation where children are together in a room and they are communicating with people who aren’t in the room and ignoring the other children in the same room. Put down those phones and talk to each other and play together.”