[Ads-l] BOGO (when the second item is not free)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Sun May 31 23:16:45 UTC 2015


I think it should be BOGOF, which is more descriptive of the deal (for reasons remarked on upthread) and also sounds a bit like "bug off" (although more like one of the more obscure characters in Tolstoy).

LH

> On May 31, 2015, at 6:07 PM, Neal Whitman <nwhitman at AMERITECH.NET> wrote:
> 
> To me, the phrase "buy one get one" (without the "free") implies that buying one stands in opposition to getting one; in other words, buying something doesn't necessarily mean getting it. This is why I don't like the acronym BOGO. You're buying one and getting two.
> 
> Neal
> 
> On 5/31/2015 5:08 PM, victor steinbok wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       victor steinbok <aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM>
>> Subject:      Re: BOGO (when the second item is not free)
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> 
>> I've been monitoring this issue for several years now and this broader
>> interpretation of BOGO has been in use in *advertising* for well over a
>> decade. Several stores, such as Target, Payless and Kohl's, use the "BOGO
>> Sale" promotons so specifically to identify the use of "buy one, get on at
>> X% discount", where the discount varies by the category of item but never
>> reaches 100% (that is, tge second item is never free).
>> 
>> Worse, Staples and others have used the initialism to describe promotions
>> where one has to buy multiple items to get a free one (e.g.,
>> buy-two-get-one-free or buy-three, etc.). I haven't seen this in use at our
>> local supermarket that uses "buy-one-get-two-free" occasionally. But I have
>> heard it described in casual interpretatation as "buy one get [discount]
>> off [another]".
>> 
>> VS-)
>> 
>> On 1:47pm, Sun, May 31, 2015 ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>> 
>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>> -----------------------
>>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>> Poster:       ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
>>> Subject:      Re: BOGO (when the second item is not free)
>>> 
>>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>> 
>>> Apologies to Barry for not examining the very valuable entry that he
>>> has about BOGO,
>>> 
>>> 
>>> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.barrypopik.com_index.php_new-5Fyork-5Fcity_entry_bogo-5For-5Fbogof-5Fbuy-5Fo-3D&d=AwIC-g&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=BV0FuTsSenmBWz7Q31WcKrorGg-AUs_VjNFmu8c6vYk&s=N-DCNdvAf4XHLQCFOuqogAEoBn97HxHXkutPAv5wem8&e= ne_get_one_free/
>>> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.barrypopik.com_index.php_new-5Fyork-5Fcity_entry_bogo-5For-5Fbogof-5Fbuy-5Fo-3Dne-5Fget-5Fone-5Ffree_&d=AwIC-g&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=BV0FuTsSenmBWz7Q31WcKrorGg-AUs_VjNFmu8c6vYk&s=tJjqvl2S2N9HDS-vbAss7ERvE7Qjy6Igt8z7fz5Iybo&e= >
>>> 
>>> A 1992 citation that Barry listed revealed that the meaning
>>> encompassed a second item at half price.
>>> 
>>> [Begin excerpt]
>>> 11 November 1992, Florence (AL) TimesDaily, =E2=80=9CBargain hunters scout
>>> stores for new deals=E2=80=9D by Martin Sloane, pg. 1C, col. 2:
>>> If you shop at the Farm Fresh supermarket in Virginia, you probably
>>> know what a =E2=80=9CBOGO=E2=80=9D sale is.
>>> 
>>> If you live in Princeton, Ill., you may have shopped in a new grocery
>>> store called BOGO=E2=80=99s. If you are a smart shopper who enjoys a
>>> bargai=
>>> n,
>>> then you defnitiely look for BOGOs.
>>> 
>>> What is BOGO?
>>> 
>>> The letters literally stand for =E2=80=9Cbuy one, get one.=E2=80=9D What
>>> do=
>>>  you get?
>>> Well, in many cases if you buy one product, you get a second for free.
>>> Other times the second product is available at half price.
>>> [End excerpt]
>>> 
>>> Garson
>>> 
>>> 
>>> On Sun, May 31, 2015 at 12:34 PM, ADSGarson O'Toole
>>> <adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>> -----------------=
>>> ------
>>>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>>> Poster:       ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
>>>> Subject:      BOGO (when the second item is not free)
>>>> 
>>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
>>> ------
>>>> In April I saw the following sign at the entrance to a store in an
>>>> outlet mall in northern Florida.
>>>> 
>>>> [Begin excerpt of text on sign]
>>>> 
>>>>          BOGO
>>>> BUY ONE T-SHIRT
>>>>  GET ONE 1/2 OFF
>>>>        --- MB ---
>>>>       SPORTS
>>>> Officially Licensed
>>>> 
>>>> [End excerpt]
>>>> 
>>>> This sign did not accord with the definition provided on Wikipedia
>>>> because the second item was not free.
>>>> 
>>>> Bogo
>>>> (disambiguation page on Wikipedia; viewed May 31, 2015)
>>>> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__en.wikipedia.org_wiki_Bogo&d=AwIC-g&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=BV0FuTsSenmBWz7Q31WcKrorGg-AUs_VjNFmu8c6vYk&s=XF1FNNJDwm0tbgEGLy0QnZhwPGSYB2vzKRzZ_um9qxE&e= [Begin excerpt]
>>>> BOGO or BOGOF, an initialism for buy one, get one free, a common form
>>>> of sales promotion
>>>> [End excerpt]
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> Yet, the definition at the Urban Dictionary website allowed for the
>>>> possibility of "some lesser value". Has the meaning shifted over time?
>>>> 
>>>> BOGO: urbandictionary (viewed May 31, 2015)
>>>> https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.urbandictionary.com_define.php-3Fterm-3D3DBOGO&d=AwIC-g&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=BV0FuTsSenmBWz7Q31WcKrorGg-AUs_VjNFmu8c6vYk&s=yledMHguVd72YKw-wO8ccCRa3l-AfhizNgOnzlV0HvU&e= [Begin excerpt]
>>>> BOGO
>>>> Buy One, Get One (free or some lesser value)
>>>> that sale in produce, is it BOGO?
>>>> by stu f. May 04, 2004
>>>> [End excerpt]
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> The Oxford English Dictionary has an entry for BOGOF but there is no
>>>> entry for BOGO.
>>>> 
>>>> [Begin excerpt]
>>>> BOGOF, n.
>>>> 
>>>> Etymology:  Acronym < the initial letters of the advertising slogan
>>>> buy one get one free.
>>>> 
>>>> 'Buy one get one free': a retail offer whereby a customer who
>>>> purchases a particular item receives another such free of charge; an
>>>> item obtained in this way.
>>>> 
>>>> 1985   Progressive Grocer June 91   A recent buy-one, get-one-free
>>>> (BOGOF) promotion.
>>>> [End excerpt]
>>>> 
>>>> Garson
>>>> 
>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
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>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
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>> ------------------------------------------------------------
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> 
> -- 
> Dr. Neal Whitman
> Lecturer, ESL Composition
> School of Teaching and Learning
> College of Education and Human Ecology
> Arps Hall
> 1945 North High Street
> whitman.11 at osu.edu
> (614) 260-1622
> 
> 
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