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Strictly speaking

MEME

The term meme, or more particularly internet meme, has become a buzzword to describe any concept or idea that spreads very quickly via the internet or social media. Examples of these can range from a catchy phrase, to a video, ...

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THE LAST HUMMER

The vehicle that looks like a railway carriage on wheels charging down the highway is a reminder of the rapid evolution of vehicle design priorities. The last Hummer rolled off the production line in 2010, its fate sealed by being ...

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Romnesia

In a speech in Virginia on October 19, Barack Obama riffed on the term Romnesia to accuse his Republican opponent of forgetfulness over previous policy statements. He wasn’t the first to use the word. The American news organisation motherjones.com carried ...

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INDEFFED

Indefinite appointments give unlimited tenure to academics, which must be one of the few positive uses of the adjective. The cut-down form – indeff, turned into the verb indeffed – carries the weight of a life-sentence for those whose editorial ...

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SKEUOMORPH

When I referred to the trash or recycle bin on our desktops in a Strictly Speaking last month (18/9), I didn't know that this is what's known as a skeuomorph (from the Greek skeuos "vessel, implement" + morphe "form"). The ...

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BIRTHISM

Birthism is a new word for a very old kind of bias or prejudice against others according to their birthplace. It is a thinly disguised form of chauvinism, disparaging of different nationalities, ethnicities and any other language than one’s own. ...

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