Thursday, October 23, 2008

The definition of FAIL... you. Ha ha. Or your mum to be more precise.

But no, what does FAIL mean these days? In this very good article from the American online magazine Slate, Christopher Beam traces the origins of this rather splendid word and how it has changed thanks to its appearance in obscure Japanese video games, online gamer chat and now a brilliant blog dedicated to the art of fail.

We all know what fail used to mean: it existed as a verb. I fail, you fail, she fails, we all fail: you get the general idea. But now it's undergone conversion and can be used as a noun - a fail, a total fail, an epic fail - or even an adjective - you are fail - but it's unclear whether this will last or if it's just another passing language fad.

Have you come across it? Is it part of your vocabulary? Or just another nerdy internet thing like w00t and pwned which two students (Leanne and Henrietta, hello!) and me (hello...oh hang on) know about from our mis-spent time on t'internet?

Useful for:
ENA5 - Language Change
ENGA3 - Language Explorations

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