Percentage point--missed word in dictionaries

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Fri Dec 21 00:53:18 UTC 2001

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tom Gally [mailto:tomgally at]
> To: honyaku at

> Have you noticed that whenever a new dictionary is
> published, the publicity
> material and news reports always focus on the trendy
> words that have been
> added to it? One reason is that those are the easiest
> words to gather. The
> hard part is spotting new or unrecorded meanings of
> conventional words,
> especially words that already have many meanings. Mark
> Spahn pointed out
> that apparently no English dictionaries explain the
> important difference
> between "percentage" and "percentage point"; that may be
> partly due to the
> Genesis Lexicographer's oversight, but another factor is
> probably that
> "point" has so many other meanings already. If the word
> for "percentage
> point" were instead "perpoint" or "centification" or
> "cybertick," it would
> have been caught and added to dictionaries years ago.

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