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Category: Words

Everything on Mashable is a “holy grail”

If I edited Mashable, I’d ban the phrase “holy grail.” Over the last few years, tech writers and the people they quote have used it to describe practically every marketing and technology fad. Behold a cliché out of control:

The Cloud… What does it even mean?

Today, the phrase “The Cloud” is showing up in ads with annoying frequency. It’s a trendy buzzword, but nobody seems to agree what it means. Let’s see if we can come up with a definition of “The Cloud.” Then we’ll … Continue reading

When words lose their power

English sure has some great adjectives. Really great ones. Also wonderful, dazzling, extraordinary, wicked cool, keen, fine and sweet ones. After a while, however, these words wear out.

Obama’s “socialist” new slogan

“Forward.” Recently, Barack Obama began using that single word as a campaign slogan. Now his opponents are using it to brand him as a socialist. Behold the power of a word!

New words, April 2012

Here are a few new words I’ve noticed in recent weeks.

How do you say Mondelēz?

Kraft Foods recently made a stunning announcement: “Kraft Foods Inc. today announced plans to change its corporate name to Mondelez International, Inc.” Say what?!

New word alert: Linsanity

Linsanity: (n.) The state of excitement surrounding basketball phenom Jeremy Lin — a point guard for the New York Knicks, the NBA’s first Chinese-American player, and a gift to sports headline writers everywhere.

Hit ’em with the squid

Last year Rolling Stone published an investigation by Matt Taibbi that began with one of the greatest leads in recent memory. It’s the one that defined Goldman Sachs as a “great vampire squid.”

Best and worst new words of 2011

This is the time of year when linguisticians, lexicographers and other highly trained wonks announce their lists of new words that joined the English language this year.

New word alert: Cone-ing

Cone-ing is the new planking. Here’s the formula: Bored kids + camera = harmless G-rated mayhem. This time there’s soft-serve involved.