World's worst enwordifications

One of my coworkers just tried to convince me that “canonicalization” is a word. Of course, webster’s says no, but Google returns 35000 results.. It’s wholly unnecessary, what with “canonization” a perfectly good choice, it makes tongues stumble, and it just sounds like a two-year-old trying to learn grammar.

Anyway, this got me to thinkin: what are the worst made up words you’ve ever seen/heard? Be it marketing-, techie-, or political-speak. No need to include lame brand names like “Impreza,” as the goal in those cases is precisely to conjure images of the real words, just focus on actual attempts to communicate ideas that have gone horribly, horribly awry.


Well I’ve heard Bush cement his stance on edumucation…“embetterment” or maybe “Carbon Benoxide” or how about “intelligy?” Nope I think one of my favorites is “suiciders…”

oooh, another Bushism. Strategery.

any missuse of the word ending

transitionalization for example

On reflection, I agree with you. But I have to point out that my mental associations with “canonization” are “making a saint” and with “canonicalization” are “including in a star wars film” :slight_smile:

Can I include a favorite, circumlocutious sounding though valid, word? “Submultiplicative” used in maths to mean “something that when multiplication is pulled through gives a smaller answer.”

Sure, it’s been around for years, but “normalcy” still annoys the heck out of me. :rolleyes:

Commentating instead of commenting.

Orientating instead of orienting.
But canonization and canonicalization would mean different things. The first is a step on the path to sainthood, whereas canonicalization would mean something becoming canonical; as,,sid9_gci841392,00.html says:

“To canonicalize … is to ensure that data conforms to canonical rules, and is in an approved format.”

Authored. Grrrrrrrrrr. Whatever happened to “wrote”?

I’d sound funny, wouldn’t it, if Monday Night Football was commented on by John Madden and Pat Summeral.

My favorite is CONVERSATING :cool:

The Alien “Quadrilogy.” What’s the matter with “tetralogy”?

It’s a perfectly cromulent word.

I believe “canonicalization” is a techny neologism coined for online security protocols. Am I right?

The ones that get me are (and this is prolly coz of my transatlantic ears):

Orientated - “oriented” not good enough for you?
Thusly - very sly, adding that extra couple of letters to “thus”.
Burglarized - they’ve longwordendingized “burgled”!

I reject any church that uses “fellowship” as a verb. e.g. “Let us fellowship together.” That just “impacts” my “parameters” to the point of shuddering.


“I’ve never boughten a real dictionary before.”

The word incent used as a verb. “He’ll do a good job if you incent him amply.” Urgh.

Or using pleaded as opposed to plead which is a perfectly valid (and correct) past tense of to plead.

Oh, and disorientated. “I woke up disorientated.” Can’t you wake up disoriented?

You been talking to my MIL?? She’s fond of certain “store-boughten” items.

First year in college, I had a heated discussion with a fellow student who insisted the correct term was “freshly-squozen” orange juice. After all freeze -> frozen, so squeeze -> squozen, right?


“Partner” as a verb is a clinker to my ear. “The school board will be partnering with the chamber of commerce…” Ugh. Please, please don’t ‘partner’ with people…just “work with” them, or “cooperate” with them. Save partnering for cowboys and superheros.

Especially since Pat has retired.

Me, I hate winningest . Not even a semblance of a word in there. Come on, backconstruction and such are alright, but what possible evidence exists that a participle can become a superlative ANYWHERE?

Future classifieds: Car not running? Let Jeff’s “World’s Fixingest” Auto Shop help your vehicle be its runningest.

I was going to say that the use of nouns as verbs is my pet peeve.
But I recently realized that the verb “keyboarding” comes from the noun “keyboard”. Not unlike the verb “typing” comes from the noun “type”.
So, I now realize that this is just evolution of language.

However, I will second that “conversate” is just wrong.

Hey now! “Orientated” is a good word. It means you got pointed east. That’s not how people use it though. So I always carry my compass around so when people want to get “orientated”. It’s so helpful people always thank me. “East. That way. There you go.”