Friday, August 31, 2007

Undictionaried words: Erin McKean

While we're on a dictionary thing, a recent development in linguistics blogging is that publishers are feeding bloggers offers to review books (!) and links to some media appearances by their folks. I haven't bitten on one until now, but Erin McKean's presentation on dictionaries and dictionary making is just too good to pass up.


pc said...

Perhaps what the publishers don't realize, though, is that no linguistics blogger who reads other linguistics blogs is probably going to bite after they see that other linguistics blogs have bitten. So, like, maybe I was going to bite on this one too (we all know that I HEART McKean), but now, probably I won't, because well that would just be silly.

But I agree - this PR spread to lowly linguablogs is interesting.

Mr. Verb said...

Good point. I wonder if they're just experimenting with new possibilities ... to see if we pick up on stuff and if so how.

In that weird lingo-blogging dance we all do, I did think about how somebody else would be better to pick this up, but nobody had, and it really is an engaging piece. It will be interesting to see what the comments on the TED website are as more and more people watch this.

This video, in some sense, seems like good data for your laudable quest to understand linguistics in public ... when you write the classic article on the topic, you'll probably have a section on McKean and maybe a reference to this video.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't get it to play off your site, Mr. V - so if others have the same problem, go to Worth watching, if a little cutesy.

Wishydig said...

I'm having some problems embedding the video on my blog too. I've uploaded a copy to YouTube and I'm going to try embedding that one.

Wishydig said...


I've resorted to saving the file and putting it on another server. But it works. embedded on my blog.

It is a fun talk and its topics sustained about 45 minutes of lively conversation this evening with only one bottle of Smithwicks to move it along.

Regarding the PR plan: I do wonder if they count on an image of several unconnected cells of language bloggers out there who remain unaware of 'elsewhere' conditions.

Now how can I build up an infrastructure for scooping these events...?

Sounds like too much footwork.