The New York Times‘ Standards Editor Phil Corbett had banned the use of the word “tweet” in all articles in print and online because the word is not in the dictionary.
Of course, the word will be allowed in articles about birdwatching in Central Park, but only if the birdwatchers aren’t describing the colorful plumage of the birds in 140 characters or less.
Not only is this decision entirely out-of-touch with today’s society, but also reveals the Old Gray Lady is really the soon-to-be Really Extinct Newspaper Dinosaur.
So as you read NYT articles about people “writing of Twitter” and “composing 140-character updates to online service Twitter.com,” remember how one editor at the Times took a stand against using what will most definitely become a “real” word in the dictionary soon enough.
Maybe then Webster’s Dictionary will add a photo of Phil Corbett under “Pulling a Corbett” — its definition meaning “Making a decision to stand firm as the world continues moving forward.”
I wonder if he and other editors at the Times were against using the word “google” before it appeared in the dictionary or if this is just about making some noise so that someone picks up a copy of the Times…