Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: Acronymns (was Re: C-IPA underlying principles and methods)

From:Muke Tever <mktvr@...>
Date:Wednesday, February 26, 2003, 11:47
From: "Christophe Grandsire" <christophe.grandsire@...>
> Not so. I think you're the one who's confused here. I've just checked a bunch > of online dictionaries, and they all agree (and not only in English, the word > has an identical meaning in all languages I know). You can call an > abbreviation an acronym *only* if it is pronounced as a word (which is the > main definition found everywhere. You don't even have to take only the first > letter of each word. "radar" is an acronym too. The only condition is to be > an abbreviation pronounced like a word). If you pronounce "LOL" [lOl], as I > do, then it's an acronym. But something like BBC isn't, because each letter > is pronounced separately.
Well, non-prescriptive English extends the semantics somewhat from its etymological base... "AIEEE" >> (We are, by the way, aware that certain pedantically-inclined types insist that an initial-based abbreviation must be pronouncable to be called an acronym. We don't care.) << "Explain Acronym Search" >> Enter an acronym (e.g. IBM) << "AFRL Acronym Dictionary" (with unpronounceable acronyms such as TDC, PDF, LLLTV, etc) "Acronym Search" >> Not all acronyms form pronouncable words. For example, SVP is an acronym that is not pronouncable, instead each letter is spoken. << AHD4 sidesteps this by not referring to whether it's pronounceable: >> A word formed from the initial letters of a name, such as WAC for Women's Army Corps, or by combining initial letters or parts of a series of words, such as radar for radio detecting and ranging. << (Unlike "ISO" and "NASA", the definition of "WAC" doesn't feature a pronunciation. The derived word "WAC" meaning a member of WAC does; but that word spelled "Wac" in AHD3, which had the same definition of 'acronym' verbatim, so...) It's debatable whether or not this is "wrong" usage, but it is in common use. *Muke! --