Nouns Transform Into Technology Verbs

As we all know, nouns describe a person, place, or thing and verbs represent actions. But the makers of Schoolhouse Rock may need to compose a new catchy jingle, as the distinction between these two parts of speech is getting blurry.

Verbing — the practice of turning nouns into verbs — is not new. In fact, it’s part of the magic of the ever-evolving English language. Millennials lament about the difficulties of “adulting” when they learn about home ownership and spend their vacation fixing up their house instead of partying at the beach. Business leaders “table” topics for later discussion and Olympians “medal” in different events.

Just Google It…

Thanks to technology and social media, more nouns are turning the corner and becoming verbs. No matter which search engine you prefer, when we need to research something, our first thought is to “google it.” When we invite people to connect on Facebook, we ask them to “friend” us. Move over Casper, these days the term “ghost” also refers to ending a relationship abruptly by cutting off all communication without explanation. On the flip side, instead of loving something, you might “heart” it—a step above a thumbs-up like—whether it’s your friend’s Instagram post or a cute cat video. And it’s very common to “bookmark” a favorite webpage for easier access later.

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First published in our May 2021 IT Radix Resource newsletter