Re: Thunderbird e-mail failure
- Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2019 10:43:03 -0500
- From: Wolf K <wolfmac@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: Re: Thunderbird e-mail failure
On 2019-01-01 03:40, Daniel wrote:
Wolf K wrote on 1/01/2019 11:55 AM:
Here's a question I should ask Google .... "What did 'Google' mean 30,
50 years ago??"
On 2018-12-31 15:25, PietB wrote:
You're learning fast; not a member of the mindless masses? :-)
Even better: "Search engines are your friends". That would
be a good start for 2019.
It just doesn't have the same ring to it, though. Those slushy
fricatives just don't cut it. A good catch phrase must not only mean
what it says, it must have a certain rhythm and sound. "google" has
become a generic verb for "search on line". Google may not like that
use of its trademark, and you may like it even less, but there's not
much they or you can do about it. English speakers generally don't
give a rat's ass for such niceties. They'll use the words they want,
how they want, when they want.
I wonder what the answer might be!! ;-P
The word was coined by Google. It has become a generic word, as several
online dictionaries report (I googled "google". ;-) ) There are
different stories of how they come up with the word. Here's one which
seems plausible enough, especially the misspelling bit:
Some people have used "goggle" as an alternative word, possibly because
a) it means "to stare at", which meaning is easily adapted to "stare at
lots of data --> search through lots of data"; b) they don't want to be
seen as promoting Google; and c) they think "google" is a misspelling of
"goggle"; and etc. Or something like that.
This shift from brandname to generic term happens often when a word is
invented to label a new product or service. See what happened to
"kleenex", which was a generic term for "facial tissue" when i arrived
in this country many decades ago. Kimberley-Clark went to court to force
public media to set it as Kleenex(tm), but it took about 30 years for
the term to be replaced by "tissue" in common parlance. Tissues are made
by many other manufacturers, so Kimberley-Clark has lost the linguistic
link between the product and the brand. IOW, insisting that the word be
used only when referring to its own brand has cost the company zillions
of nudges towards purchase of their brand. They should have consulted
linguists before going to court to "protect" their trademark.
Brand managers are a little more sophisticated these days, which may be
why Google isn't objecting to "google" as a generic verb.
It's called an "opinion" because it's not a fact.
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