Who Knew The Dictionary Could Be Savage As Hell

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  • Never pick fight with people who know how to use words. They’ll cut you deeper than the sharpest knives!

    Particularly, don’t pick fights on Twitter with the very people who define words. This was lesson hard-learned by Gabriel Roth, the senior editor of Slate, who decided to talk some smack about Merriam Webster after they tweeted it was okay for the word “mad” to be used in place of the word “angry.”

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  • Roth decided that wasn’t enough though and doubled down on his verbal critiques of the dictionary:

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  • That’s when Merriam Webster replied and presumably sent Roth straight to the nearest burn ward:

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  • Ouch!

    The editor at large of Merriam Webster, Peter Sokolowski, spoke with BuzzFeed News and said the “banter was done in the spirit of good fun.” He also added that Roth’s critique was not uncommon, saying that “it was something Merriam-Webster has heard many times before.” He spoke about the fluidity of language and how Roth’s critique and those like it are not necessarily the way language actually functions:

    “Dictionaries record those changes, and ‘mad’ used to mean ‘angry’ — the post to which [Roth] was responding to — is a good example of such a change. Gabriel Roth’s assertion that we are somehow pandering about language rules in order to be the ‘popular’ parent or authority figure is one that we have heard many times, but meanings of words aren’t created by dictionary-makers, they are used by many people in many places, and we then derive definitions from evidence of actual usage.”

    In other words, mad can be used in place of angry. Deal with it.

    Are you guys mad? Let us know what you think in the comments down below or on Twitter @WhatsTrending!

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