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Hmm ... not sure how best to categorize this. It's clearly a back-formation. It's definitely used as cited (so I'm removing the RFD). Formally, it's a verb, not an adjective, but I couldn't find "e-quaint" by itself and clearly it's meant for the idiom "get/be" e-quainted. -dmh 04:05, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)


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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.


--Connel MacKenzie 08:07, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

Why is this here Connel — shouldn’t it be at WT:RFV? † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 14:51, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Agree. It's shown as use on Google, so I couln't fathom any reason to delete it other than it being unattested. DAVilla 19:30, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Because this entire class of words are "nonce words." See Internet-related prefixes (and the many references there.) Obviously, our current CFI is too weak with regard to this class of passing-fad. This one I happened to notice on it is now nominated. --Connel MacKenzie 05:13, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
According to the current CFI, if there are three durably archived citations spanning at least a year it is not a "passing fad" for our purposes. Therefore unless you have personally checked and failed to find three such citations, it should be on RfV to allow others to cite the word if they can. If nobody can (which they will not be able to if it is truly a nonce word), then it can be deleted. Until that time the prominent "verification for this usage is being sought" is a big enough marker for users to be wary of the accuracy of the term.
If you think that the "current CFI is too weak with regard to this class of passing-fad" then you should be proposing, in the appropriate place, a strengthening of the CFI not unilaterally applying a different standard to the rest of the project. I wouldn't object to requiring the citations to span at least two years, and might be persuaded about three years (but I would have to see good arguments for this). Thryduulf 10:14, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
I’m with Connel in his desire to do something to exclude these “nonce words”. They’ve mushroomed into ubiquity since the popularisation of the internet. Their meaning is always so obvious (especially the ones wherein the hyphen separating the prefix from the word is retained), that I doubt that their exclusion would bother anyone in practice. However, despite my opposition to this “entire class” of words, I would vote keep for e-quainted and e-quaintance, as the e- has displaced the initial ac- of acquainted and acquaintance, thus making it irregular prefixation (that is, if the words in question were e-acquainted and e-acquaintance, I would vote to delete them). † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 15:21, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
If they are "nonce words" then they will not meet our CFI. If they meet our CFI then they are not "nonce words". If you are not certain whether a word, any word, is a nonce word or not, then list it at RFV. If it fails RFV then it will be deleted after about a month.
If you want to exclude an "entire class" of words from Wiktionary, then we need to modify the CFI so they are either explicitly disallowed or to include an additional requirement that they fail. This can only be done with the consensus of the community following discussion in an appropriate place. Here, the RFD for a single representative of this (so far undefined) "entire class" of words is not such a place. However as I implied above, I do not see the need for such a modification, as nonce words already fail our CFI and words that meet our CFI cannot be nonce words. Thryduulf 19:02, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
E- can be and is added to virtually any noun, verb, or adjective to set it in an internet-related context. If our CFI required that words be “internally idiomatic” (that is, that they not simply be the sum of the parts of their constituent affixes, which, to clarify, I don’t actually support), then the vast majority of e-prefixed words would fail such a criterion. I agree with Connel that the vast majority thereof are passing fads — they just don’t pass quickly enough for our CFI. I agree that it is time to beef up the CFI to prevent the creation of entries for words that it is pointless for us to have. However, this entire debate is irrelevant to e-quainted and e-quaintance for the reasons I’ve already given hereinbefore. † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 19:31, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
I agree with you this is irrelevant to e-quainted and e-quaintance, but the discussion with regards the CFI is one that needs to be had somewhere. I'm not certain where that somewhere is (Beer parlour?, the CFI talk page?), otherwise I would start it now. Thryduulf 21:23, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
This debate is a disagreement about policy. The Beer Parlour is the forum for policy issues. Therefore, the debate ought to be started there. † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 23:08, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
The proposal would be dead in the water. I had nominated Dutchman once as "sum-of-parts" and was shot down immediately by several people. DAVilla 03:42, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
This “class” of words, I daresay, is a little different. There are many more of them, they see only recent usage (they are almost all neologistic), most retaining the hyphen (which makes prefixation obvious), and a lot are just noncy “internetting”-a-word-for-the-hell-of-it (now that is some ugly verbing). Though, as stated above, this word and its relation are different as they are not so regularly formed. † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 07:51, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
Recent usage or not, we should really be qualifying terms on equal grounds. The only thing I could say about an older use is that its appearance in some work several hundred years ago would more clearly be "durable" than Usenet. DAVilla 19:46, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
I’d have no problem applying the same prerequisites to similar classes of transient nonce words. We could perhaps treat hyphenated words as different from other words, requiring that they meet stricter criteria than words where the join is not so obvious… † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 22:58, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

The entry now has every not-just-mention quotation available via Google Books (1) or Google Groups (3). Further, the word only has 40 hits on normal Google. So, I guess it does meet CFI, but I for one really wouldn't mind its deletion, if someone felt strongly that we shouldn't include it. —RuakhTALK 00:35, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

I think if it's cited it should stay, but I'm hesitant about counting Usenet more than once for something that's an internet term in the first place. I've looked at other online sources and come up empty. What about Amazon? If there's nothing, move to Quotations:equainted and delete almost all of the content.
As per nonces, in a few cases our CFI explicitly allow them. Some well-known works use words that are not actually used anywhere else. In those cases I would consider adding "nonce" as contextual information, but I'm not sure that any of those pages remain. We have generally been requiring three citations regardless. So I'm not sure that there even are any nonces on Wiktionary. DAVilla 03:34, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
We have hapax legomena which are, almost by definition, nonce words. However, they are very different from all these e-prefixed neologisms and protologisms in that they are (to introduced a Wikipedia concept) noteworthy. How we build “noteworthiness” into the CFI, however, is a rather difficult question. † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 07:51, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
No. A hapax legomenon can be a single use as a result of poor source materials, such as for Hittite, Mycenean, and even Latin and Ancient Greek. In these cases, we believe that the word was a more important part of a once active language, but that we have only a small sampling of texts from which to document words. A nonce word exists in a particular situation, typically as a coinage. --EncycloPetey 19:42, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
How about pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, aequeosalinocalcalinoceraceoaluminosocupreovitriolic (now unjustifiably deleted), supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (perhaps), and honorificabilitudinitatibus? –They’re all hapax legomena. † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 00:48, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
I'm not familiar with that last one, but I know that the first one you've listed is decidedly not a hapax legomenon. I've encountered it more than once, which by definition means it's not a hapax legomenon. I first encountered the word when I was in elementary school. It appeared in a book titled something like "the big book of knowledge" or "1001 curious questions". I have encountered it in other books since—not often, of course, but more than once. --EncycloPetey 06:16, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
Hapax legomena are, by virtue of their notability, often mentioned in other works (especially dictionaries), but are, often by virtue of their unwieldly specificity, rarely or ever used to convey meaning. Are you sure that your encounters with pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis were examples of its use to convey meaning, or were they simply mentioning the word because of its length? † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 18:46, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, it was used in the cases I'm discussing. Now please stop your pettifoggery. --EncycloPetey 18:12, 12 July 2007 (UTC)
Pah! The difference is not trivial — the use/mention distinction often decides whether a word satisfies WT:CFI or not. Anyway, do you accept my point that our criteria fail to let through notable oddities like hapax legomena (a very recent example of which can be seen with squirriliting/squirgliting failing WT:RFV and being deleted). † Raifʻhār Doremítzwr 22:58, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Inconclusive, kept. DAVilla 10:42, 21 August 2007 (UTC)