Evolving Words and Marketing

An interesting piece this past week in the Wall Street Journal by Ben Zimmer describes the decline of the word “stylus” in tech circles, even though the device itself is experiencing a resurgence of interest (with newer, larger phones/phablets becoming popular). We talk in class about shifts in language, and vocabulary is definitely one of the primary ways Read More

An Insider’s Thoughts on Commas and Style

I read a very interesting article in this week’s New Yorker written by Mary Norris, who’s worked on the copy editing end of that magazine for a long time. I find pieces like this fascinating (the New York Times also runs a regular column where they discuss stylistic choices made in the newspaper) because they give Read More

Appositives in Online Writing

I was getting my daily news fix the other day and came across an article about the current state of immigration reform in Congress. As I read, I came across this sentence: “They’re willing to treat people who simply want to make a better way of life for themselves and their families inhumanely and use Read More

New Words Added to OED

The Oxford English Dictionary, one of the most respected lexical collections in the English-speaking world, recently issued an update (they do this monthly, in case you’re interested) describing some of the new words that have been added to the dictionary. You can read about all the additions in the article linked in the previous, sentence, Read More

The Tyranny of the Like Button

I’ll admit up front that I’m not an avid Facebook-er, so perhaps some of the complaint I’m offering here is due to my naiveté about the medium. I’m also kind of old, and maybe this is the embryonic old codger in me coming out. I imagine the Like button on Facebook has been around on the Read More