The 10 best words the internet has given English
Posted: 24 April 2013 07:13 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Here.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 08:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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The 10 best words the internet has given English
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2013/apr/17/tom-chatfield-top-10-internet-neologisms

It’s an odd little list.

I’ll pay “meme” because its meaning was significantly changed by the influence of the internet.

But “geek”? There were stacks of geeks before the internet became big.

And I don’t think the internet did anything for “meh”.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 08:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Oh good, I always wanted a chance to use this one!

OP Tipping! OP Tipping! OP Tipping!

I don’t disagree that it seems like an odd use of “neologism” to use it to refer to a slang term which gives a new twist on an existing word, particularly when the new sense of it is (at least somewhat) related to the older senses of the word.

[EDIT: It appears that the thread OPT started has been merged with this one, which is, of course, totally reasonable, but it does make my “OPT! OPT! OPT!” comment look rather bizarre (that is, even to those familiar with the meme).]

[ Edited: 24 April 2013 01:37 PM by Svinyard118 ]
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Posted: 24 April 2013 09:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I’ll have to check the story, but I doubt Heinlein was using “geek” in the modern “technophile” sense.  At best, I’ll bet this is a misreading of Heinlein’s character applying the “repellent person” sense to someone who also happened to be technologically adept.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 09:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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As far as I can tell, only two of these actually originated with the internet, hashtag and scunthorpe. One might count trolling , spam , and LOL, which started on Usenet not the internet, as the distinction between Usenet and the internet is pretty nitpicking. But the others are definitely not internet related in origin.

Avatars started with games, memes in a biology book, meh on television, cupertinos in spell checkers, and geeks at the carnival.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 12:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Here’s the relevant extract from the Heinlein story, The Year of the Jackpot, published in 1952.

He sighed and pulled the November 1951 copy of the Western Astronomer out of his pocket. Where was he? Oh,yes, Some Notes on the Stability of G-Type Stars with Especial Reference to Sol, by A. G. M. Dynkowski, Lenin Institute, translated by Heinrich Ley, F. R. A. S. Good boy, Ski - sound mathematician. Very clever application of harmonic series and tightly reasoned. He started to thumb for his place when he noticed a footnote that he had missed. Dynkowski’s own name carried down to it: “This monograph was denounced by Pravda as romantic reactionariism shortly after it was published. Professor Dynkowski has been unreported since and must be presumed to be liquidated, The poor geekl Well, he probably would have been atomized by now anyway, along with the goons who did him in.

I don’t get the impression that Heinlein is using geek in the modern sense. I think he’s using it loosely and it’s equivalent to poor lummox, poor sap, or any other such term. The fact that the guy is a scientist is irrelevant to the word but it’s easy to see how it’s been misread. That’s my take anyway.

[ Edited: 24 April 2013 04:21 PM by aldiboronti ]
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Posted: 24 April 2013 02:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Thanks, aldi.  I agree with your interpretation.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 03:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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In fairness, VB only beat me by mere minutes.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 03:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Thanks for the Heinlein quote!  Unfortunately, an important bit of punctuation was omitted:

Good boy, Skisound mathematician.

should read:

Good boy, Ski — sound mathematician.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 04:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Thanks, lh, I missed that. Fixing it forthwith.

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Posted: 24 April 2013 06:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I was having a devil of a time parsing “Skisound mathematician”!  (A fun, if in hindsight clearly pointless, exercise.)

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Posted: 24 April 2013 11:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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23 skisound!

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Posted: 26 April 2013 05:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Not sure I understand the logic behind Dave’s acceptance of Hashtag and Scunthorpe, but holding a small reservation about Usenet related words.  If we take the original title literally (words given to us by the Internet) then we are limited to technical terms or perhaps the word “internet” itself.  All other terms come from services or applications running on that basic infrastructure, thus LOL etc. are no different to hashtag etc.

I note that no one else mentioned this, so is there a difference in my understanding of the range of the word “internet” (or “Internet")?

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Posted: 26 April 2013 12:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Most definitions of the internet talk about linked networks all running the TCP/IP protocol and since Usenet runs on different protocols and different servers and is administrated separately and predates what we generally think of as the internet by several years, I believe the distinction is noteworthy, even if not recognized by most.

Personally, I think the internet is more of an idea than anything else. While I find the technical aspects interesting and worth learning about, I think most people don’t care how it works and simply think of the internet as some sort of “thing” they connect to. In other words, I think most people think of the internet as anything and everything you can get from an ISP and that’s actually lots of different protocols and services.

I also believe it’s fair to say that some words, like avatar, weren’t really born on the net, but it wasn’t until they started being used widely on the net that they entered the public consciousness.

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Posted: 26 April 2013 02:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Yes, my distinction was that Usenet protocols aren’t (or at least weren’t during the relevant period) TCP/IP. But if we assume “words the internet has given English” means “words that have been popularized on the medium of the internet” and include Usenet as part of the “internet,” then only about half the list would count.

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