MICR Pronunciation

Just wanted to point out a slight correction on the pronunciation stated in the article. I have spent nearly a decade working for one of the largest banks in the US, and everyone I’ve ever come into contact with has pronounced MICR as “Micker” (rhymes with Sticker), as opposed to “Miker” (Hiker).

The current wikipedia article on MICR agrees that “Micker” is the more common pronunciation.


I think “miker” may be more common among computer professionals who do not work in banking, and know the devices only from the IBM catalog.

Welcome to the SDMB, Aaron.

A link to the column you’re commenting on is appreciated. Providing one can be as simple as pasting the URL into your post, making sure to leave a blank space on either side of it. Like so: http://www.straightdope.com/columns/070629.html

Welcome to the Boards AaronGNP!
I did a short stint in the printing business about 20 years ago and Micker was the preferred pronunciation.

I will add my experience. I worked for NCR in the 1980’s and the common pronunciation was “Miker” there (as it was at all my client banks at the time). I suspect this is one of those pronunciations that can work either way. There are always those that feel their pronunciation is the only one, though. (I seem to recall that the folks that came up with “Small Computer System Interface” really did not like that it was commonly pronounced “scuzzy”, either.)

At work, about 1/3 of the people on my team (including me) pronounce it “Micker”. The rest of 'em pronounce it “Micro”. Because they’re insane, I’d say.

And just for laughs, add in the two or three proof operators I’ve met that say it as “meeker.”

Of course, the way to really weed out the ones that aren’t in banking is to keep an ear out for people calling it “Emm Eye See Are.”

I work in IT for a company that does financials for healthcare. Our Finance Dept. prints tons of checks weekly, and it’s “micker” here.

Just a quick note to point out that using Wikipedia as a definitive source isn’t likely to impress Cecil very much. Unca Cece’s thoughts on this topic appear in Have people actually survived being hit by lightning multiple times?, where he wrote: “No doubt we can thank the cereal box, where at least you had somebody from Kellogg’s (Weetabix, whoever) keeping things straight, in contrast to, say, Wikipedia, which is more the million-monkeys-with-a-million-keyboards approach.”

I’m in IT, supporting financial and banking systems, and it’s definitely “micker” here (Pacific Northwest).