Send Me An Email.


Or would you rather just email me?

A couple of readers have asked me about making “email” a verb.  I’m a little surprised they didn’t ask about taking out the hyphen in email.

Well, as I wrote in my piece about verbyfying nouns, some of our strongest verbs were once nouns.  Linguists like to trace when nouns first became used as verbs, and I suppose some words were used as nouns and verbs almost from the beginning.

Take the word “work,” for example.  I have no idea.  Was it first a noun or a verb?

It certainly didn’t take long for “email” to be used as a verb.  At least the form of the word remained the same, and we did not “ize” it.  Wouldn’t it be awful if we “emailized” people?

All I know is, one day I made a momentous decision.  I decided on the same day that I would never again put a hyphen in “email” and that I would lower-case (notice that verb!) “internet.”

So, OK, “email” me.  But for heaven’s sake, don’t “copy” me!

Don Ranly

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