New Scientist: “Word nerds capture fleeting online English”

A fairly ordinary article in New Scientist about online dictionaries and word-hunting has been published. Ben Zimmer has some critical comments about the article.

It’s the usual stuff: it has a gee-whiz tone, it has wacky words littered throughout, it barely scratches the surface, and it makes light of “geeks” and “nerds.” The last two paragraphs are rewrites or direct quotes from my long post, Language Evolution in the Digital Age, which is fine, I guess, but since the article fails to include any URLs, nobody but you, me, and the writer will ever know. That’s old media for you.

Also, it says I “help” run Double-Tongued Dictionary. I don’t “help,” I do run it. It is 100% my show. I have a few people on the “about” page who are contributors, but only one contributes regularly.

Posted January 31, 2008

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