"Automagic(k)ally" -- Ugh!

Has anyone else been assaulted by this neologism recently?

I’ve managed to go my whole life without hearing or needing this word and now I’ve been ambushed twice in the last month. On opposite coasts. The common factors, however, seem to be that both speakers were 1) sales types and 2) selling software.

I did a quick web search on Yahoo! and turned up 1156 web pages with this absurdity embedded within. Some of them, thankfully, were automobile-related. I can handle AutoMagic when I’m buying a new miracle product for my car. But almost all the rest were a cutesy way of telling me something was going to happen automatically!

Wait – here’s the really scary part! The apparently earliest reference was to a short story entitled “The AutoMagic Horse”. The author of this story was none other than – L. Ron Hubbard!

I detect a world-wide conspiracy, started by the Scientologists, to turn our minds to mush through juvenile, simpering constructions like the topic subject. Fight back! Stem the tide! If you hear this word – Speak up! Hoot! Bray! Whatever it takes to make everyone so ashamed of it that they will never use it again.

p.s. I am sending a copy of this thread, along with your comments, if any, to the most recent speaker I heard. He was an interesting speaker and seemed to have something substantial to say up until this utterance crept into his talk. Actually, his whole presentation was very good. I just couldn’t believe he would include this excrescence in an otherwise notable speech.

There is no opinion so absurd that some philosopher will not express it.

Sorry, bub, but automagically is a well accepted part of Hacker jargon.

An excerpt from The Jargon File, 4.1.4:

You lose!

Hmmm… you’d probably hate me then, for my Rand-O-Magic Surf-O-Tron, a name which, frankly, still makes me giggle. And yes, I think “automagically” is cute. So there.

Teeming Millions: http://fathom.org/teemingmillions
“Meat flaps, yellow!” - DrainBead, naked co-ed Twister chat
O p a l C a t

I don’t want to post about this, but I can’t help it. This is the first time I’d heard of the word(?), and it seems annoying to me. Few enough things happen automatically, and the idea of automagic is really just too much to stand. Unless applied to Chemistry, which I don’t understand, and to me, might as well be automagic.

God help us, every one.

If I wanted to talk like hackers or ad men I could still find better words than this one.

My point is that it has no place in ordinary human discourse. Not only because it was used in a pejorative sense every time I heard it (“You wouldn’t understand even if I explained it to you.”) but because the word is just plain ugly.

Opal, I’ve got no gripe about your invention. There’s enough tongue-in-cheek to blunt any objection to the construction. But these people were dead serious, as if they had actually communicated useful information. Accck! Bleccchhh! Yuck!

I haven’t heard this word and I hope I never hear it again. Thanks for bringing it to my atttention. It sucks.

I can only picture someone saying this word in wittle baby tawk and giggling hysterically at being so cute. Vomit.

Formerly unknown as “Melanie”

I’m on the side of hoping never to hear this word spoken out loud. It reminds me of one of those Friends type words or phrases which are sort of funny exactly ONCE. Then you get to hear every yokel repeat them ad nauseum. For example “How YOU doin’?” with a Joey (from Friends)-like leer, or the phrase “Not so much” as a reply to ANY QUESTION asked, whether it makes sense as a reply or not.

Ahhh. It’s not that bad. It comes in handy when talking to some poor clerk on the verge of retirement (or some twit manager who should be) who has just had their first computer plopped on their desk. They’re scared to death to touch the thing and you’re telling them all the wonderful things it will do for them. The word breaks the ice.

(It beats reponding to the VP who asked how the new system actually works with


“Frequency Modulation? Really?”

“No. Fuckin’ Magic.”)