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Re: [css-fonts] "Irregardless"? REALLY?

From: Brad Kemper <brad.kemper@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 2 Dec 2009 10:15:21 -0800
Cc: "Eric A. Meyer" <eric@meyerweb.com>, www-style <www-style@w3.org>
Message-Id: <0548FE16-BAB9-4C15-B212-0E22B49EF7B8@gmail.com>
To: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>

On Dec 2, 2009, at 8:47 AM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:

> I still think "regardless" is a better word choice there.  

I'd generally agree, but it is an editorial choice.

> Let's not
> promote silly opposites-mean-the-same-thing word pairs like
> flammable/inflammable.

I don't think many people would insist on anyone going through all their documents replacing the word "inflammable" with the word "flammable", just because the evolution/degradation of "original" meaning is more recent and therefore more recognizable. A real grammar nazi might want you to replace it with the Latin "flammare" or some Old English or Chaucerian English equivalent, because of what it was before it was slowly corrupted into modern English. 

There are also same-things-mean-opposite words like "sanction" that represent the same sort of insensibility, but we don't try to obliterate one usage in favor of the other with those. Languages change over time, not due to anyone taking a vote or making an executive decision, but because of the way common people commonly use words. And irregardless of what we might prefer, or of the hairs that may stand up on our backs when we hear it, "irregardless" and "inflammable" are already real words. 

Received on Wednesday, 2 December 2009 18:16:01 UTC

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