Monday, March 24, 2008

Abusive acronyms

Acronyms are a great example of how language changes to reflect new social trends, or how government bodies and market researchers dream up new, crazy categories to place us in. So, TWUNCERS is new term for "two or more walkers using non-essential cars" as featured here in today's Telegraph.

It's not quite a full acronym, more an acronym with a suffix (the -er morpheme added to derive an easily usable noun) a bit like yuppie and buppy from the 1980s (young upwardly-mobile person + ie and black upwardly-mobile person + y respectively).

The article gives some silly examples of made up acronyms, such as banana and gravitas, so have a look if you want to see language being used inventively.

Useful for:
ENA5 - Language Change

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