Campaign to add "concept" as a verb in M-W

Chris F. Waigl chris at LASCRIBE.NET
Tue Apr 25 20:41:04 UTC 2006

On Tue, 2006-04-25 at 14:58 -0400, Benjamin Zimmer wrote:

> On 4/25/06, James Callan <james.callan at> wrote:
> >
> > The blog driving the campaign:
> >
> > The petition:
> >
> > The petition's text:
> > This petition is to be used as a vehicle to lend help and support towards
> > the Verb4Concept movement. Set in motion by copywriter Ray DelSavio,
> > the goal of this movement is to get Merriam-Webster's Collegiate(r) Dictionary
> > to acknowledge and add to it's annual, the verb form of CONCEPT. By doing
> > so the "Great Book" will more accurately reflect the vast usage of the word
> > in various creative arenas as well as offer recognition to what, as creatives,
> > we do on a daily basis.
> [...]
> >
> > to con·cept (knspt) - con·cepted (knspt-ed) - con·cept-ing (knspt-ing)
> > v.
> > 1. A process whereby ideas are generated for the purpose of creatively solving
> > a problem: "The team set aside some time for concepting in order to flush out
> > some plausible directions."
> So, in addition to concepting pointless dictionary petitions,
> creatives are also busy concepting eggcorns...

I'm a little unclear about this eggcorn. Maybe they meant to say "cause
to come out"[1] and not "give substance to" or "develop more fully".

Chris Waigl

[1] With the rationale that without setting aside time for, uh,
concepting, only implausible directions are likely to emerge. Thus, in
order to cajole _plausible_ directions out from wherever they are
hiding, time has to be set aside.

The American Dialect Society -

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