Passa ai contenuti principali

Puns, put-down and fresh coinages from the white-hot furnace of e-culture

What do you call the loss of productivity caused by too much time spent on Facebook? "Social notworking." A steeply devalued retirement account? "201(k)." A painfully obsolete cellphone? "Brickberry."

These linguistic dispatches from the land of cooler-than-you come courtesy of wit-mongers Cramer-Krasselt, a Chicago-headquartered full-service agency with a tidy billion dollars in annual billables. C-K's notable accounts include Corona beer, AirTran Airways, Levitra and Porsche -- which sounds like a recipe for a wild weekend in Fort Myers, Fla.
For the second year, the firm has published its Cultural Dictionary of the zeitgeist-iest words and phrases, pulling together -- as only an office full of droll and snarky hipsters can -- the slang, puns, put-downs and freshly minted coinages from the white-hot furnace of electronic culture. It's pretty hilarious.
To wait impatiently while the SMS system catches up, for example, is to be "textually frustrated." "Baling out" is F-bombing a helpless underling a la Christian Bale; "Blago" here appears as an expletive, as in "Holy Blago, Christian Bale really Blagoed the pooch!" Some entries are simply Web wastrels, such as "pwn" (to triumph utterly over another) and "gr7" (pretty good, but not gr8). Hit your teenagers with these and watch their eyes narrow with suspicion, or is that respect?
And yet many of C-K's entries offer real insight, even wisdom, to a consumer culture constantly trying to figure itself out.
The first question, though, is why an ad agency would bother. Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure famously wrote, "There is no thought without words" . . . sort of. Actually, he wrote, "La pensee, chaotique de sa nature, est forcee de se preciser en se decomposant." Which I translate as, "Thought, naturally chaotic, becomes concrete and precise in the framing of language."

Source: Ihavenet


Post popolari in questo blog

Little platoons

There's no reference to Hegel in the Tory manifesto, but there is an allusion to one of the founding fathers of conservative thought, Edmund Burke. The "institutional building blocks of the Big Society", the document reads, "[are] the 'little platoons' of civil society". “Little platoons" is a phrase that occurs in Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790), the classic expression of conservative scepticism about large-scale attempts to transform society in the image of abstract ideals. The Tories today use it to refer to the local associations that would go to form a "broad culture of responsibility, mutuality and obligation". The problem is that, for Burke, little platoons weren't groups that you volunteer to join; they were the "social subdivisions" into which you are born - the kind of traditionalism you would have thought Cameron's rebranded "progressive" Conservatives would want to avoid. T

Microsoft Language Portal

Microsoft Language Portal:  a bi-lingual search portal for finding translations of key Microsoft terms and general IT terminology. It is aimed at international users and partners that need to know our terminology for globalization, localization, authoring and general discovery.  It contains approx. 25,000 defined terms, including English definitions, translated in up to 100 languages as well as the software translations for products like Windows, Office, SQL Server and many more.

Football or soccer, which came first?

With the World Cup underway in Brazil, a lot of people are questioning if we should refer to the "global round-ball game" as "soccer" or "football"? This is visible from the queries of the readers that access my blog. The most visited post ever is indeed “ Differenza tra football e soccer ” and since we are in the World Cup craze I think this topic is worth a post. According to a paper published in May by the University of Michigan and written by the sport economist Stefan Szymanski, "soccer" is a not a semantically bizarre American invention but a British import. Soccer comes from "association football" and the term was used in the UK to distinguish it from rugby football. In countries with other forms of football (USA, Australia) soccer became more generic, basically a synonym for 'football' in the international sense, to distinguish it from their domestic game. If the word "soccer" originated in Eng