Fox Business confirms (or not) that Twitter will have an IPO

In an exchange with a Twitter spokeswoman that stretches the boundaries of coyness, Fox Business reads less between the lines and more between the quotation marks. Or not.

We pause for language identification. Or not. Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

I tend to live my life mostly in confusion.

The more I understand people, the less I understand, people.

So please could you all help me out just this once?

I am possessed by a Fox Business headline that reads: "Twitter Confirms IPO -- Or Maybe Not."

Can you see the source of my confusion? Well, if I understand the article (or not) Twitter spokeswoman Carolyn Penner replied to a Fox Business inquiry about a potential IPO with the words: "..."

No, they're not exactly words. But in this age of texting and emojiing, anything written down passes for a word. If John Updike were alive today, he'd be writing whole books in grawlixes.

Helpfully, Fox Business explained that the Urban Dictionary declares (in words) that "..." is an ellipses. This may "indicate the omission or suppression of a word or phrase. The ellipses also 'usually indicates a pause or silence.'"

Here, I paused for silence. All I could hear was my own confusion, galloping toward me like a horse that had enjoyed too much Guinness.

What did this mean? What if it didn't mean anything? What if it did?

This might have enormous implications. Or none at all. What if it did? What if it didn't?

I waited for word from Twitter. Helpfully (or not) CEO Dick Costolo took to the most profound news-disseminating site (Twitter) to exclaim: "#! @?"

This was in reply to a question posed to him by Techdirt's Mike Masnick.

Wait, I thought. Where's my Urban Dictionary? No, I need an Urban Dicktionary.

I rushed three-parts of the way to my cellar and stopped. It was 2:42 p.m. I have principles. No wine before 6.

My colleague Jennifer Van Grove made like Florence Nightingale and came to my rescue.

She tweeted: "$$$$$$$$$$$$?" at Costolo. Actually her tweet wasn't that at all. But when confusion reigns, it's hard to read straight.

In fact, she wrote: "hmm how does urban dictionary define "#! @?""

She immediately received a reply from Costolo that explained everything (or nothing).

It was: "it's from that one scene in The English Patient."

Which scene? The one where they stare at each other, don't say anything, and fall in love? Or the scene where everyone seems to have ended up in a monastery?

Wait, Katherine dies at the end. Does that mean the IPO is dead?

I need a mop for my brow.

I can, therefore, neither confirm nor deny that Twitter is going to have an IPO in 2014.

Nor can I confirm nor deny that I am confirming or denying that there will (or won't) be a Twitter IPO in 2014.

Furthermore, I can neither confirm nor deny that Elon Musk has taken a newly designed power drill and is currently cutting deep swathes into the rock somewhere along the California coastline.

I can, however, offer you a quote: "%+!=**#^."

That's Urban Polish for: "Boze Kochany, co sie dzieje dzisiaj?"

So now you know. Or not. Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET
 

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