Marc Naimark's writing and interviews _____________________________________________________

Lake Superior State University’s banned words of the year: Pretty lame, as usual

Posted in Uncategorized by marcnaimark on 2015/01/02

lssubanishtoon_resizeBack in the day, they were “Lake Superior State College”. Now they’re a university (la dee da) and they’re still at their banned words list. I don’t think much of it. It’s mostly cranky people, often confusing the word and the thing they dislike. Let’s look at this year’s entries:

BAE: I have missed this one. Thankfully. If it’s “babe” just say “babe”.

POLAR VORTEX: If it’s a thing, use it. I think it is a weather phenomenon. Is it that overused?

HACK: Life hack? I can live with it. And this guy is just wrong:

“This word is totally over-used and mis-used. What they really mean is ‘tip’ or ‘short cut,’ but clearly it is not a ‘hack,’ as it involves no legal or ethical impropriety or breach of security.” – Peter P. Nieckarz Jr., Sylva, N.C.

“Hacking” does not mean unethical or illegal. Know the word before criticizing it.


SWAG: Is it that overused?

FOODIE: Sorry, it’s useful for those who obsess about food. It does something neither “gourmet” nor “gourmand” do.

CURATE/CURATED: Agree that the overextension of the word is silly..

FRIEND-RAISING: The distaste should be with the phenomenon, not the word.

CRA-CRA: It’s fun!

ENHANCED INTERROGATION: Agree that it’s “torture”.

TAKEAWAY: Useful! Words can be used for different things, so the objections that it’s only the BrE word for “take out” is silly.

-NATION; Yes, overused.


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