findability--a real word?!

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Aug 25 19:48:07 UTC 2010

At 10:56 AM -0700 8/25/10, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
>On Aug 25, 2010, at 10:40 AM, David Barnhart wrote:
>>  An e-mail in today's barrage of messages was entitled "Findability fake
>>  word, real problem.  Not in OED, New Words Concordance, nor the Dictionary
>>  Companion.  But, _findable_ is in OED (c1449)...  _Findability_
>>certainly is as much a real
>>  word as many of the stunt words that are noticed in the WOTY exercise.
>i thought the generalization was with an adjective in -able you got
>the derived abstract noun in -abil-ity for free.  innovate
>_discussable_ and you get _discussability_.

Not to mention the negative counterparts thereof, whence
_undiscussable_, _undiscussability_.

>  surely only a small number of -abil-ity nouns merit tracking and
>citations in the OED.

Ditto for _un-_ adjectives, except the ones (more abundant than with
the -ability/-ibility nominalizations) that undergo semantic drift.


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