Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

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my5cents
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Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by my5cents »

"Socially Distancing" - Since the start of the pandemic, the battle cry of health professionals. But isn't it the incorrect phrase ?

What the health professionals are asking us to do is refrain from getting physically close to each other. NOT become socially distant from each other. If I audio or video chat with family and friends frequently, aren't I socially close to them ? If I keep apart from them so we eliminate the chance of any virus spread, we PHYSICALLY stay apart.

"I could care less" - I gather, a saying intended to share the idea one cares very little. It has replaced the original saying "I couldn't care less". Meaning whatever the discussion was about is was so trivial that I cared so little I couldn't care [any] less.

If "I could care less", doesn't that mean I care an amount and there is room to care less ? In other words I care. It's the opposite of the reason for making the statement.

"First past the post" - Is a saying used when describing the current manner in which we elect public officials in this and other many modern countries. The correct term is "single-member plurality voting" or "SMP". It's the reason our elected representative can win with less than 50% of the popular vote.

The term is supposed to describe the scenario where, in an election, the candidate with the most votes wins. Isn't "first past the post" a term that describes a race, such as a horse race. A race in which each competitor attempts to arrive that a certain point first. Thus first past the post in an election would equate to the first candidate to receive A vote, not the candidate that received the most votes.

I'm sure there are lots of other sayings that have been changed and now are miss used, what's your peeve ?

Maybe I'm just getting cranky from all this social distancing I'm doing and the rest of you could care less.
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Trīewth
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Trīewth »

my5cents wrote:

I'm sure there are lots of other sayings that have been changed and now are miss used, what's your peeve ?
I'd be wary of any girl named miss used, but to each his own.

On your other concern, welcome to the age of imprecise language, buzzwords, abbreviations, catch-phrases and invented words that comes from a general lack of literacy and social media. It's an era where it is more important to be relevant and viral than correct.
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MAPearce
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by MAPearce »

Yeup ... We've become lazy with language and it's proper use ....

I blame "them " for not teaching cursive in school anymore .
I payed attention in High school....But I didn't need too .
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Omnitheo
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Omnitheo »

I was taught cursive I’m school. Aside from my signature I have never once had to use it in life. The majority of written language is now done electronically, so that is far more important to teach.

As for language itself, well words change over time. It’s the reason I’m typing this up with a mix of words from Germanic and Romance languages with the occasional Hellenic word included as well (as opposed to some pure Latin, or Celtic). Dictionaries are not the law on language, nor do they dictate the way a word must be used - people do. A dictionary simply records all known usages of a word at the time it’s written. If I say i think you’re astronomically cool and hot and awesome, I probably mean I’m attracted to you, and not that you are some sort of revered cosmic antipodal force. Because it’s the way people use words which are more important than their original meaning.
Last edited by Omnitheo on Dec 4th, 2020, 7:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Trīewth
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Trīewth »

MAPearce wrote:Yeup ... We've become lazy with language and it's proper use ....
And I'm sure you meant to say its proper use... (;
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Sonny Taylor »

Nucular and orientated.

I know they are now accepted somewhat, but they do make people sound uneducated.
my5cents
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by my5cents »

When in doubt, axe someone.

I was always taught that the term "foyer", which is a French term was pronounced "for-yay". The Americans in their over-powering, never wrong way continually pronounced the word "for-yer"

Now, if you look the word up it give two pronunciations, "the English pronunciation" "foryer" and the "overseas pronunciation" "for-yay".

Whatever Americans do, is the correct way. Americans speak English so anything they say is the correct English pronunciation.

I recall a conversation I had with an American about how our number plates show validation. I said we stick a decal on the plate (de-cal) "de" like the beginning of the word "death". After many minutes the light came on in his head and he said "Oh, you mean a "dee-cal" "

Then there is the letter "Z",,,, you know "zed" If you go on line you will see reference to "in America "Z" is pronounced "zee", in Britain and others, it's pronounced "zed". (I guess the United States of America, they tend to forget that little piece of land north of them, that is the second largest country [by area] in the world, their closest neighbor, and lump us in with "others".

In one article it stated "It's not just the British that pronounce "z" as "zed", the vast majority of the English speaking world does" a surprise, no doubt to the ill informed masses of "America" who thought they were, as usual, in the majority as to how they pronounce "Z", or anything else for that matter.

Also the USA calls their country "America" I gather because it is on the continent of North America. Doesn't Canada take up much more area of North America than the USA, but they refer to their country as "America".
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it"
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Omnitheo
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Omnitheo »

America means different things to different people. In South America they don’t differentiate between the north and south America’s. It’s one continent and they themselves are Americans.

The rest of your post basically lays out how language changes, and how different dialects form. I’ve heard many people lampoon Quebec saying “they don’t even speak real french” when in reality the French of Quebec is actually a lot more akin to what was spoken 400 years ago in various regions of france. Even today, Portugal struggles with trying to maintain their “authority” over the Portuguese language as the much larger majority of Portuguese speakers in Brazil continue to advance the language locally.

Americans aren’t wrong with the way they pronounce things, because in every day language, the people they interact with understand them whether they’re asking or aksing. New dialects evolve, African American Vernacular for instance, which is a legitimate dialect with its own linguistic rules
"Dishwashers, the dishwasher, right? You press it. Remember the dishwasher, you press it, there'd be like an explosion. Five minutes later you open it up the steam pours out, the dishes -- now you press it 12 times, women tell me again." - Trump
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mexi cali
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by mexi cali »

It's Zee.
Praise the lord and pass the ammunition
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Bsuds
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Bsuds »

mexi cali wrote:It's Zee.
I always have trouble with this one since I lived in the US for a few years.
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by Omnitheo »

I think "Zed" makes more sense as it sounds much clearly and distinct from ”See". Though there are plenty of other letters that have this problem themselves anyways.
"Dishwashers, the dishwasher, right? You press it. Remember the dishwasher, you press it, there'd be like an explosion. Five minutes later you open it up the steam pours out, the dishes -- now you press it 12 times, women tell me again." - Trump
my5cents
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by my5cents »

Omnitheo wrote:................Americans aren’t wrong with the way they pronounce things, because in every day language, the people they interact with understand them whether they’re asking or aksing. New dialects evolve, African American Vernacular for instance, which is a legitimate dialect with its own linguistic rules
Oh, I wasn't suggesting they were "wrong", just pointing out that "Americans" think that if they do something a certain way, they think that most of the world does it the same way. Like zee, they are surprised to learn that the majority of the English speaking world calls the letter "z" zed.

I guess mostly because Americans are pretty ignorant of anything not American. Sadly our media, our (again sadly) window on the world, we are inundated with US news to the exception of even Canadian news, at times.
Last edited by my5cents on Dec 7th, 2020, 9:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Have we lost our dictionaries ? Ignorant of meanings ?

Post by LANDM »

mexi cali wrote:It's Zee.
Are you implying Zed is dead, baby?
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