Photoshopped by Siria Coello (CAS '23).
Emma Murphy (CGS '24)

Emma hates Socrates and tulips.

“Writing’s not that easy. But Grammarly can help.”

At first, this ad terrified me. Writing is easy! I don’t need help! I mean, as an English major, it’s about the only thing I can do! Please, stop making me question my job security! Then, mid-semester, I realized writing is only easy when I fantasize about doing it. And if I actually do it, I fantasize about not doing it. 

In the first two weeks of March, I did nothing but write essay after essay. I was kept alive by a crippling fear of failure and dining hall coffee (which is just okay). I thought to myself, “At least I’m not in computer science; can you imagine how boring I’d be if that was the case?” Well, after the forty-eighth hour of dull pins and needles, and whilst suffering a migraine the size and strength of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, I discovered I am not a writer. I am a sadist. Intent on torturing myself for the sake of a degree that yields zero financial success. Worse still, I realized the squares in computer science developed a technology that will inevitably prevent my suffering, and the suffering of sadists everywhere.

Yes. Computer scientists. Programmers. People who have tried to eliminate writers since the creation of the printing press. And now, after the centuries-long war, Grammarly is the winning battle strategy. The final piece of the puzzle. All this time we thought programmers were the antithesis of everything holy, but instead they were doing God’s work. Like Jesus turning water into wine, Grammarly turns discussion posts into Shakespeare with just a few clicks. 

When parents, teachers, and neighbors alike ask “What do you want to major in?” Our response won’t default to English anymore. Obviously, there’s no future in that degree. Soon, it won’t even be an option. With Grammarly, programmers have eliminated the need for human editors. I mean it corrects grammar, sentence structure, word choice, and word flow within seconds –the most efficient editor in the world. No mere human could possibly compete.

“Aha!” you try to argue, “We still need writers, because Grammarly cannot edit a blank page!” You fool. The internet makes it so easy to fill a page. Google collects information and displays it. Schmoop and SparkNotes analyze it. Grammarly edits it. Surely, you’ve seen the computers which spit out original scripts after being fed random information. At first, we laughed at those scripts –amalgamations of nonsensical archetypes– but imagine them combined with Grammarly. Every part of those pages which are grammatically incorrect, Grammarly will fix. 

To English majors, like me, who read this and feel a creeping despair of irrelevancy, let me ease your minds. Imagine your future with an English degree. What were you gonna be? A teacher? Were you gonna write a book? Who was gonna read that book, exactly? No. You chose English because you lacked passion and ambition. You believed writing was your only skill. Writing is not a skill; it’s the absence of skill. Do you expect to receive fair wages when A.I.s can write better and faster than you? Not a chance in hell. 

Don’t cry yet. You still have time to switch degrees and pick up something more useful. Maybe after you become a programmer you could even work for Grammarly. I can’t imagine a world in which someone who switched from English to computer science would be any good at programming, but we can dream. 

As you begin to come to terms with this information, remember all the good Grammarly will bring. Soon essays will be a thing of the past. No more re-wording the same paragraph for five-hours because “it’s just not quite right.” No more relating every piece of literature to capitalism because you forgot to read the material. No more peer editors who say “looks good,” after spending not nearly enough time looking. Our weekends can be filled instead with modern and meaningful pursuits, like 12 hour Minecraft sessions, or “fun” Jackbox games. 

Yes, our world is beginning its descent into the Wall-E universe, but don’t be afraid. How often have we wished work was optional? Once the computers are programmed to fulfill every human duty, we will finally be able to enjoy a lifetime of pure entertainment. Nothing will ever be “wordy,”  or “hard to read” again. 

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