My Beautiful Wickedness


Impactful
March 10, 2009, 11:22 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Is this really a word now? I’m not asking to be snotty, though I know that sounds like a snotty “please, I’m so fed up with neologisms and I’m a syntactical stickler” question. I know language changes and I don’t think that’s a bad thing, for the most part. What brings this up is that I’ve recently read this word in a number of blog posts authored by people who love words and are thoughtful in their word choices. That suggests that they’ve thought about it and are either using it ironically (as one would use an “advertising” word, for effect) or that it’s now becoming acceptable usage.

To me, it sounds wrong. I don’t think that something can be impactful any more than something can impact events. Something can have an impact, but that’s different. Anyhow, I fear I’m about to find myself in a fussy minority on this. What do you think?

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7 Comments so far
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I’m with you. Having said that, it would be quite embarassing to find out I’m one of the ones who used the word. 🙂

For your reading pleasure:

http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/exceedance.htm

Comment by Slartibartfast

I’m with you, but I’ve been hearing the word used on cable TV news shows.

Comment by Gerald

Does “impactful” have anything to say that “influential” doesn’t? I don’t think so.

Comment by nm

When I worked at an ad agency, the account reps used to say “impactful” all the time. As head proofreader, I made it my mission to charge over to the desk of anyone I heard using that word (or anxiously wait, if I’d be interrupting something important at that moment) and ask them, “Do you know what ‘impact’ means?” Once they’d gotten their bit out (assuming they weren’t just goggling at me), I’d say “‘Impact’ means *this*!” and slam my hand down hard onto their desk.

Didn’t win me any fans…but I slept the sleep of the just.

Comment by John Gruver

bridgett:

I hate it when people use fakalistical words like “impactful”

Comment by democommie

“impactful” “gifting”

Still not words yet…

And can someone please explain the morphing of “Oh No!” into “Oh Noes!” and ‘the’ into ‘teh?’ I’m behind the times on that..I get the context but how did it happen? (as if you don’t have enough to do…

Comment by imfunny2

It’s leetspeak, as I understand. (Speaking of words that aren’t words…)
Here’s the wiki article on it:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teh

Comment by bridgett




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