Tag: Grammar

America Has More Than One Spanglish

Take English: When the Normans ran England for a spell after 1066, French was the language of writing, government and ceremony while English was thought of as the language of the peasantry, unwritten and unobserved. During this time and afterward, French words flooded into English, such that today we use many French words as a […]

Read More

AI-powered writing assistant Writer nabs $21M

Writer, which bills itself as an AI writing assistant for marketing teams, today announced that it raised $21 million. (Writer’s total now stands at $25 million.) Insight Partners led the series A round with participation from Gradient Ventures, which Writer CEO May Habib says will be put toward customer acquisition initiatives and headcount growth. Writer’s […]

Read More

Some Hear Grammar Don’ts. I Hear the Future of English.

It may seem from some of my recent newsletters — championing “they” as a singular pronoun and “me” as a subject pronoun — that there’s something about being a linguist that makes one strangely permissive about what language is supposed to be like. And there is. Before technology existed to stay underwater long enough to […]

Read More

Missing Apostrophe in Facebook Post May Cost a Man in Defamation Case

A missing apostrophe in a Facebook post could cost a real estate agent in Australia tens of thousands of dollars after a court ruled a defamation case against him could proceed. In the post last year, Anthony Zadravic, the agent, appears to accuse Stuart Gan, his former employer at a real estate agency, of not […]

Read More

Gender-Neutral Pronouns: The Singular ‘They’ and Alternatives

The most natural coinages would be those that form a set with “she” and “he” such as “que” (“kwee”), “re” and “xe.” Could anything be closer to the heart of the L.G.B.T.Q. community than the first of those? And this is just a starter in the brainstorming exercise. The nonbinary community may pick it up […]

Read More

The Gender-Neutral Pronoun ‘They’ Causes a Stir

Feedback on my newsletter about the embrace of “they” as a gender-neutral pronoun referring to a single person — Joel is wearing their green shirt today because it matches their pants — has been, well, pointed. It seems that quite a few people have a major problem with this change in pronominal usage. I understand […]

Read More