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Tea room discussion[edit]

Note: the below discussion was moved from the Wiktionary:Tea room.

Are all these noun senses really distinct? Thryduulf 11:32, 25 October 2008 (UTC)

Well, the nautical sense and the working-group sense are definitely distinct IMO. The theatrical sense doesn't have much support in the other dictionaries I looked at (RHU, MQ, WN), but it seems as distinct in its own right as the nautical sense. In both theater and sailing, "the crew" is *the* crew, a specific entity not requiring further definition, whereas in more general use it is simply *a* crew -- the B&G crew, the repair crew, my crew -- one of many possible groupings of people. -- Visviva 12:20, 25 October 2008 (UTC)
I added the sense of loose social grouping. Such groups can be capable of working on a common task (getting into a fight, raising money for a good cause), but don't usually. I don't see the theatrical sense as really distinct from, say, a logging sense, both of which seem to fall under sense 2. To me there is some kind of shared purpose, but somewhat distinguishable kinds: shared tangible piece of equipment, shared task or project, shared potential to act as a unit. I can't think of words that would allow fewer senses. DCDuring TALK 12:53, 25 October 2008 (UTC)
I've started Appendix:Dictionary notes/crew for our entertainment and edification... Only the OED has anything resembling the theatrical sense. And yet, I can't help but think that "crew" (="not cast") is at least as important a distinction as "crew" (="not officers"), which gets a separate sense in 3 of the 9 dictionaries I surveyed. -- Visviva 15:30, 25 October 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for very interesting and well-presented e&e. An excluding-leadership sense seems important. The idea that there can be multiple sections of the total complement operating a piece of equipment (eg, flight crew, cabin crew) is also worth capturing for completeness. I am disappointed in myself for having forgotten the hip-hop sense (roughly synonymous with "posse"), despite living in the self-proclaimed hip-hop capital of the world, though it is not really distinct from the older sense. I also think that that older social-group sense is often pejorative as a few of the dictionaries indicate or perhaps jocular. I have never liked definitions with narrow contexts that differed little in substance from definitions in other contexts, but the cost in loss of concreteness and vigor in the wording of a general, multi-context definition can be high. DCDuring TALK 16:21, 25 October 2008 (UTC)
  • I've done a bit of work on this now, though I'm not sure it is really in any better shape than when I started. I found on close inspection that both the theatrical and quasi-nautical senses can refer either to a certain type of group (plural "crews") or to a member or members of the group (plural, and rare singular, "crew"). It seemed like this was too much information to pack into a single sense line, so I have split both of these senses for now (having first attempted to unsplit the quasi-nautical sense before realizing what a mess that would create). If anyone has a better idea, please jump in. Thankfully this does not seem to apply to any of the other senses.-- Visviva 15:12, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
    These could be merged by adding “or a member of such a crew,” but then it may not be explicit how the respective plurals are formed. Michael Z. 2008-10-30 15:31 z
    A usage note regarding the plurals would probably be a good idea in that situation. Thryduulf 17:45, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
    Well, in addition to the plurals, these two senses (or aspects of a sense?) have will have different synonyms (sailor, hand, crewer vs. ship's company, staff) and frequently different translations... I expect that would apply to the dramatic sense(s) as well, though I'm less familiar with that case. -- Visviva 02:59, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

RFC discussion: July 2015–November 2017[edit]

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The following discussion has been moved from Wiktionary:Requests for cleanup (permalink).

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, but feel free to discuss its conclusions.

MWOnline has 7 senses. We have 14. Our definitions have a large amount of overlap, no subsense structure, and not even an intelligible order of presentation. DCDuring TALK 13:39, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

  • Happy with it now? I organised it into Group of people, subheadings, Person, subheadings, Rowing --WF on Holiday (talk) 07:55, 19 August 2017 (UTC)