Blibbidy Blahbidy Blog [Updated 11/5/03]
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Son of Blibbidy Blahbidy Blog, or, I Started a Joke

My post immediately below on "blog" and its variants has drawn comment and meta-comment, to which I have little to add beyond this:

1. I'm not so much shouting "Stop!" as I am asking for a do-over, knowing full well that no such opportunity is going to be coming my way. "Blog" and its variants are no doubt here to stay, and may well have more staying power than many other contemporary neologisms, e.g., broad swaths of the vocabulary sired by hip-hop or Derrida. I don't much like the word, but who asked me to? It doesn't take too much to see that the terminological opinions of two little lawyers don't amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world. In our defense, I'll quote Fowler on neologisms in The King's English:

Most people of literary taste will say on this point 'It must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh'. They [neologisms] are Liberal-Conservatives, their liberalism being general and theoretic, their conservatism particular and practical. And indeed, if no new words were to appear, it would be a sign that the language was moribund; but it is well that each new word that does appear should be severely scrutinized.
2. For the time being and subject to the unencumbered right to be inconsistent and change my mind on the whole subject at some later date, I intend to stick with "web journal." It's an affectation, I know, but I choose to make it one of my affectations.

3. Lest I should be accused of any consistency at all on this issue, note that I only brought it up in the first place as a bit of a lark, in a piece in which I at least half-seriously praised Mickey Kaus for a neologism, "Gutenberging." That one, I predict, will not be catching on any time soon.


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