Anorak News | Away With Words

Away With Words

by | 26th, June 2003

‘LANGUAGE and meaning are a recurring theme in today’s newspapers.

A is for Autocutie

Having learnt that the words ”opposition” and ”terrorists” are interchangeable, the Telegraph opens up the new Collins English Dictionary and finds a few new twists and turns.

There are now 5,500 new words in the English language which qualify for an entry into the book.

A ”chew-‘n’-spew” is a fast-food restaurant. An ”autocutie” is a young, attractive but inexperienced female TV presenter.

Other – and these may be of interest to Alastair Campbell and his minions – are new takes on what the paper calls ”contemporary obsessions”.

So we have ”road map, ”regime change”, ”WMD”, and ”stealth tax”.

Plagiarism, cheating, passing off and other ways of pretending the work of another, say, someone like Dr Al-Marashi, whose academic work is known in Government circles as a ”dossier”, are all words that remain unchanged in their meaning.

But the Telegraph says that the new dictionary includes elements of weblish – a form of English favoured by visitors to Internet chat rooms and, one supposes, by definition paedophiles and hunch-backed perverts.

Key ones to know are IYKWIMAITYD (If you know what I mean and I think you do), BBL (Be back later) and HYSAWMDOASMWAM? (Have you seen any weapons of mass destruction or a swarthy man with a moustache?)

Posted: 26th, June 2003 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink