"We didn't have time to phone-call anybody."

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sun Nov 11 16:14:54 UTC 2012

At 11/11/2012 10:06 AM, Arnold Zwicky wrote:
>On Nov 11, 2012, at 6:27 AM, Damien Hall <damien.hall at NEWCASTLE.AC.UK> wrote:
> > Joel asked:
> >
> > 'Is this a [what-do-you-call-it]?  Like "rotary phone" was needed when
> > keyed phones arrived.  What other "adjectives" besides "phone" are
> > now attached to "call"?  "cell-call"?  "page-call"?  "IMS-call"?  Etc.'
> >
> > That's a retronym, isn't it?
> >
> > A fairly common pre-modifier for 'call' is 'voice', to
> distinguish plain old telephone conversations from video
> ones.  There are no doubt others!
>i don't think that phone calls here are being contrasted with other
>types of *calls* -- but with e-mail(s), tweets, texting, etc., so
>"to phone call" is an alternative to "to email", "to tweet", "to
>text", etc., not to "to X call" for varous Xs.
>that is, "to phone call" is just a verbing of the N+N compound "phone call".

Wouldn't one expect the alternative to things like "to email" to be
simply "to phone"?  Also, "to phone-call" can be perceived (at least
I can) not just as N+N but also as Noun(Adj?)+V, the last being the
form I wondered about -- to call using a particular device.


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