68 posts tagged with language.
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Can we please stop using the term "wheelchair bound" on MetaFilter?

Recently I have noticed several different commenters on MetaFilter using the phrase "wheelchair bound." This is a phrase that a lot of wheelchair users (including myself) find deeply objectionable, as wheelchairs actually give us freedom of movement compared to not having a wheelchair. (Also, a lot of wheelchair users are ambulatory wheelchair users, e.g. they can sometimes walk a very short distance.) The preferred term is "wheelchair user". If using it as an adjective, you can say "wheelchair using", e.g. "My wheelchair-using girlfriend."
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries on Jul 13, 2023 - 43 comments

Metatalktail Hour: Vexing Grammar

Merry weekend, friends! Today I'd like to use my words to ask about the grammar and usage issues that vex you the most, either in their observance or non-observance, or possibly just in their DNA. [more inside]
posted by taz on Apr 22, 2023 - 261 comments

What's metafilter's second language?

If English isn't your first language, what is the language you are most fluent in?
posted by aniola on Oct 25, 2022 - 79 comments

Translations of linked articles

Should I include links to machine generated translations when I link to content in languages other than English in a comment? These days, usually a pretty decent machine translation is available by right-click or offered automatically by your browser when loading the page. I used to add a link to Google Translate every time, but recently stopped, as it started to feel a bit redundant. But what do people think?
posted by Harald74 on Sep 30, 2022 - 8 comments

Working together on ableism

What can we as community members learn from each other and help each other improve about posting and commenting around issues that relate to disabilities/differences? [more inside]
posted by warriorqueen on May 30, 2022 - 187 comments


Tell me about your family or household's language. What made-up words do you use? What words do you say in a different tongue? What slang, puns, or in-jokes are only valid under your roof?
posted by signal on Mar 27, 2022 - 79 comments

People vs Garbage

The phrase "garbage people" or the habit of describing people as "garbage" or as "trash" seems to be making a resurgence on my social media lately. I've seen it on metafilter, too, recently, and... can we not do that here, please? [more inside]
posted by eviemath on Mar 2, 2018 - 148 comments

Was there a substantial MeFi/MeTa discussion of using the word "guys"

I thought there was a discussion of the propriety/potential sexism of using "guys" to refer to mixed gender groups, or even groups of women. It is impossible to search for such a thing. Thanks.
posted by OmieWise on Nov 7, 2017 - 96 comments

Duolingo Korean club

Duolingo's Korean course was just released for Android and iOS! There was a fair bit of enthusiasm for the Japanese course when nightrecordings made a MeTa about it; can we get a decent showing of MeFi Korean learners? [more inside]
posted by Panthalassa on Sep 7, 2017 - 21 comments

MetaFilter: Multilingual Edition?

This post (and the previouslies mentioned in-thread by veggieboy) made me wonder whether posts and comments in languages other than English could/would be a welcome part of MetaFilter. [more inside]
posted by zebra on Oct 2, 2015 - 61 comments

Another 'Only at Metafilter' Moment

In the Ask thread Did people actually say "shwench", town of cats posted a question about a 30 year old William Safire article asking about one slang term referenced in the article. A few weeks later, Slanguage Guy posted a confirmation of the slang term, and he is the one who sent the original usage to Safire 30 years ago!
posted by Philbo on Aug 22, 2015 - 27 comments

Metafilter gets a Mention

This Guardian article on words with longer histories than you'd expect, gives this AskMe a mention.
posted by Ned G on Jul 1, 2014 - 32 comments

Trying to track down an FPP about an adventure game

I remember reading a post here about an adventure game where the primary mechanic was using a tool that allowed you to change objects by altering a single letter in the word. For a (bad) example, if you have a nun figurine in your inventory, you would change the N to a G and get a gun figurine, which you could then use to hold up a bank. That's not an exact example, but sort of what the gameplay was like. Does anyone know what I'm talking about?
posted by codacorolla on May 27, 2014 - 20 comments

It's not shocking if you hear that sort of thing all the time.

I'd like to ask that people stop posting "ironic"/"what if we were talking about X TOPIC" type comments to make their point like this comment in the Alinea baby post. [more inside]
posted by sweetkid on Jan 14, 2014 - 315 comments

Duolingo Friend List Expansion Thread

Someone suggested in the foreign language thread on the Blue that we have a Duolingo username exchange thread, so I thought I'd bell the cat. [more inside]
posted by Elementary Penguin on Aug 22, 2013 - 136 comments

Grammar Corrections are Douchey, Right?

like when someone posts: "To be honest, the income difference doesn't phase us....." I wouldn't respond with "faze", right? Even if *I* like to be corrected?
posted by DMelanogaster on Aug 9, 2013 - 207 comments

The Economist follows up on Timothy Doner

There was a fair amount of cynicism in this thread about (then) 16 year-old Timothy Doner who "speaks 23 languages". The Economist's Johnson columnist has just published a story about Doner which seems to confirm (at least in part) his prodigious ability. [more inside]
posted by alby on Jul 4, 2013 - 1 comment

MetaFilter localization?

Has there been any discussion of setting up a localization effort for MetaFilter, at least for UI and other site elements? If not, what do you think of the idea? (My search-fu didn't turn up anything previous in the FAQ or MetaTalk.)
posted by Celsius1414 on May 7, 2013 - 56 comments

Unpacking the viral ninja hack guru in the cloud

This AskMe thread about new and overused business cliches/jargon is a thing of beauty.
posted by The Whelk on Jan 10, 2013 - 166 comments

Use Your Words

I'd like to have a discussion about use of the word mansplain on this website. Man or woman, doesn’t matter, if you use a word that many people find offensive, they're going to tune out what you have to say. In conversations about gender relations, is the objective to create an atmosphere of mutual understanding, or is it to demonstrate the destructive power of gendered insults by consistently ignoring repeated requests to stop using a word that people feel unfairly defined by? Because those two objectives are not compatible. [more inside]
posted by gman on Sep 5, 2012 - 506 comments

"Metafiltered" as a verb

So, as a newbie (on here; rather older in real life) and as (currently) an Englishman, is "Metafiltered" an acceptable verb? e.g. "Spotted this great little news story so I Metafiltered it", or, like, are people going to start getting all OED on me if I do that?
posted by Wordshore on Aug 8, 2012 - 92 comments

I'm afraid of Americanisms

This comment got me thinking about regional slang and different dialects of English on MetaFilter. [more inside]
posted by MattMangels on Jul 3, 2012 - 370 comments

Does MeFi have a policy on non-English language posts?

Does MeFi have a policy on non-English language posts? I thought it was odd to see a post that only French-speaking members could really understand or participate in since no English translation of the poem was given.
posted by timsneezed on Jun 17, 2012 - 130 comments

The MeFi Register, Poster and Paper

Kim Witten, AKA MeFi's own iamkimiam had asked us last month to help her collect some meta MeTa Data data. She just won the HRC Poster Competition with her poster How do you pronounce "MeFi"?
posted by bru on Mar 18, 2012 - 107 comments


Languages! We speak 'em! How can we help each other? [more inside]
posted by mykescipark on Sep 29, 2011 - 37 comments

"Bitch" is an ugly word to throw around so casually.

It's disheartening to read a bunch of users, particularly women, repeatedly refer to another woman as a "bitch". [more inside]
posted by mkultra on Aug 28, 2011 - 509 comments

Spaces are for sissies!

Genuine question time: What's up with this question? [more inside]
posted by two lights above the sea on May 19, 2011 - 119 comments

Dump "awesome"

Aren't you tired of "awesome"? [more inside]
posted by fivesavagepalms on Apr 12, 2011 - 372 comments

It's "Its"

It's "Its". Mefites are unusually smart and literate people. It seems weird to me how often mistakes like this are made. Grocer's apostrophe, too. It's like everybody loses their minds when an "s" comes at the end of a word. What is with this? [more inside]
posted by Galaxor Nebulon on Dec 8, 2010 - 279 comments

Datawank much?

Here, because I didn't sleep well last night, is a look at the use of the rhetorical device "[verb/adjective/descriptor] much?" on Metafilter. Specifically, on the blue, the grey, and the green. [more inside]
posted by cortex on Dec 8, 2010 - 92 comments

'Tis not.

America's copyeditors would like to encourage Metafilter to change the message at the top of the site. [more inside]
posted by Mo Nickels on Dec 5, 2010 - 151 comments

Steal this Derail

There's a legal term for violating a copyright owner's exclusive rights: it's "infringement," not "theft." And to this day I have not heard a single justification for why not to use it. I'm done with this derail, but I look forward to having it again every time this subject comes up" - Well, me neither. How about we don't? [more inside]
posted by Artw on Nov 4, 2010 - 225 comments

Disgusting/discussing female bits

Douchebag retro-sexism: not cool [more inside]
posted by mareli on Oct 21, 2010 - 398 comments

Is the term "Batshit Insane" offensive?

Yesterday, this post about the Discovery hostage-taking was edited (with the poster's permission) by Matt. The main result of editing was to remove the term "batshit insane" and the batshitinsane tag. I have mixed feelings about this. Is the term so offensive (presumably, to sanity-challenged folks) as to be unusable? If so, should it even be allowed as a tag? [more inside]
posted by CCBC on Sep 2, 2010 - 41 comments

Not ok to use spastic

I dunno if I'm out of touch with what the kids are saying, but I thought it was not cool to throw the word 'spastic' around. [more inside]
posted by Not Supplied on Apr 13, 2010 - 80 comments

Why the sudden rash of "honey"s?

Is it me, or has MeFi been infected with "honey" recently? It seems as though in the past week or so, every thread I go into has someone referring to another poster as "honey" or "hon" -- a term that I find startlingly condescending (with overtones of ageism and sexism, to boot). [more inside]
posted by obliquicity on Sep 28, 2009 - 302 comments

Thanks a lot, Tower of Babel

I'm working on a post in which I'd like to use a certain article that provides useful and interesting background information, information I can't find anywhere else. Unfortunately this article is a PDF file... and in Spanish. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Feb 24, 2009 - 6 comments

The etymology of HURF DURF

I've seen a few comments recently claiming or intimating that "HURF DURF" originated here, and I would like to set the record straight on this extremely trivial matter. [more inside]
posted by DecemberBoy on Aug 13, 2008 - 92 comments

that's what my daddy made me

nasreddin hit one out of the park today.
posted by plexi on Aug 1, 2008 - 222 comments

Kenya hack it?

Would you people stop trying to hack stuff? [more inside]
posted by sunshinesky on Jun 27, 2008 - 109 comments

25 new posts about how it doesn't say that.

Very short question. Why does it say 'X new links' when most posts here don't have links? Shouldn't it say 'X new posts or X new flameouts/hugesexismthreads/podcasts'?
posted by Memo on Nov 27, 2007 - 36 comments


Recently jessamyn rushed to edit the title of an Ask Metafilter question, changing it from "Nice bag that isn't gay" to simply "Nice bag." Today, on Metafilter, there is "It's harder than you think to differentiate between what's gay and what's High School Musical." Why is one offensive, and one is not, if they both reference ideas that are generally accepted as being attractive to gay men?
posted by four panels on Aug 24, 2007 - 72 comments

[less inside]

On this question, brownpau claims that there is information missing from the original question. However, it's just that the words "[more inside]" are not displayed in the question's page. I've noticed this a few other times; a turn of the phrase that is meant to end in the [more inside] looks out of whack and, until I realize that it's happened again, appears to be have something missing. Should [more inside] perhaps be placed inside the thread, as well, to lessen confusion, even though, technically, we're already inside?
posted by notsnot on Aug 7, 2007 - 6 comments

Should we say "digg-effected" or "digg-affected"?

One of the links in this FPP references a "digg-effected link." This is probably overly nitpicky and more a matter of curiosity than anything else, but would it be "digg-effected" or "digg-affected?" It's a link that fell prey to the "digg effect," but on the other hand it was "affected by digg." Thoughts?
posted by OverlappingElvis on Aug 23, 2006 - 44 comments

so cool!

Posting to Metafilter is so cool. Click previous sentence for more information.
posted by grateful on Mar 22, 2006 - 4 comments

Pronunciation of MeFi and MeFite?

MeFi: may-fee [mefi] or mee-fie [mifaɪ]? Mefite: mee-fight or may-fight? I was a little disconcerted at a meet-up to realise that some people pronounce these terms differently than I do. Is there a dominant pronounciation? Any other variants? (idle curiosity of a linguistics student)
posted by heatherann on Mar 1, 2006 - 102 comments

strawmen everywhere!

During my sophomore year in college, my classmates apparently all simultaneously discovered the word "ambiguous." We couldn't go through five minutes of a class discussion without the word being used. It was like, "I'm smart! Look at my new word! Watch me use it in any mildly appropriate way!"

I can't get ten comments through a thread here without someone cleverly pointing out a "straw man" argument. Not every argument that is contrary to your own is a "straw man" argument. An unsupported argument is not a "staw man" argument. If you disagree with someone's point, then take the time to attack the logic or the premise of that argument. Don't just call that person a "straw man." It's too ambiguous.
posted by flarbuse on Oct 25, 2005 - 125 comments

What happened to ?? ?

What happened to 김치? Because if for nothing else, he actuated this and i liked it.
plus the caps lock thread kicks this year's anniversay thread in the ash.
posted by philida on Oct 23, 2005 - 5 comments

weird phrasing in question

Strange superlative.

I have many delicious vegetarian recipes, but I better not tell this guy. I would hate to be responsible for him punching his mother in the mouth.

Or worse, my mother.
posted by Methylviolet on Sep 26, 2005 - 70 comments

MetaFilter Members In Iraq

Are there any members who are serving or have served in Iraq? Any members who live, or have constant contact with someone who lives, in Iraq? If you're willing, I have language-related questions, both about American military usage and colloquial modern Iraqi Arabic. Email me at the address on the web site linked in my profile.
posted by Mo Nickels on Aug 6, 2005 - 6 comments

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