Monday, April 5, 2010

Impactfully Impacting the Impact of the Transitive Verb HIDEOUS EXAMPLES

In the spirit of the first posting on the irretrievably vapid yet popular use of "impact" as a verb, and because the first posting has received 800% more comments than any other post in Grammarsnot history, I am obligated to further mine the depths of this foolishness. Several FOGSnot (FriendsOfGrammarsnot) have made suggestions or observations of words used in the same obnoxious fashion. I was extremely horrified to discover that this practice has been given a name: to "verb the noun." How prescient that we observed this sheer idiocy in its infancy....

Here are three of the most offensive examples dreamed up by noun pirates (in no order):
1. Parent. Now used as a verb, this is acually a perverse derivation of 'parenting' which has replaced parenthood--thank you citation to American Heritage Dictionary. There's even a whole magazine--awesome.
2. Friend. I had no idea I could simply decide that someone is my friend. To"friend" someone started with that bastion of social isolation, Facebook. In another staggering example of one wrong exponentially exacerbated by another, the use of friend as a verb has perversely spawned the word and pastime of "friending." I guess it is too complicated in computer coding to work in the act of "making a friend."
3. Incent. attributes to the American Heritage Dictionary the analysis that this word is a "back-formation" of the word, incentive. I cannot be so kind. Incent is the result of a person concluding that the suffix "ive" somehow modifies the (prefix?!?) incent. I'm going to credit the boss of the 'incent' dimwit for coming up with the bastard child of incent, incentivise. I guess this means that these are next: adject-, conjunct-, subjunct-, furt-, curs-, vot-, ICKcetera. Adjectivise? Cursivise? Hmmm.

To be continued, I'm quite sure.


Anonymous said...

"Verbification" is the term I learned years ago for using a noun as a verb. The pet peeves I mentioned back in a 2003 post were summit, medal, and podium.

I found your blog just now because I'd been "impacted" once to often by someone's use of that word. Argh!

Love your blog title, btw.

Anonymous said...

Ouch. Make that "to" a "too," please.

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