Discussion:
How do you punctuate made-up words such as "vi speak"?
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harry newton
2017-10-09 08:12:38 UTC
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In a recent post, I'm saying sentences to the effect of:

(In my vi-speak, this is how I interpret it...)

Where I am concocting the word "vi-speak".

How does one better highlight the fact that the concoction is a concoction
than by using the hyphen? Would you prefer quotes, as in...

(In my "vi speak", this is how I interpret it...)

I'm not asking how to clarify the sentence since it can be rewritten as:
(The way I interpret vi is as follows ... )

I'm just asking if I use "vi" and "speak" together, how would you punctuate
it to make it clear that it's a concoction?
Stefan Ram
2017-10-09 08:31:40 UTC
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Post by harry newton
I'm just asking if I use "vi" and "speak" together, how would
you punctuate it to make it clear that it's a concoction?
Open compounds can be compound nouns written using several
words, for example, "school bus".

No special punctuation is needed.

Hyphens usually are not required (they might be used when a
compound modifier is compound itself).

An example with "speak" is:

leet speak

(sometimes also written "leetspeak", but never "leet-speak").
harry newton
2017-10-09 09:14:30 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Open compounds can be compound nouns written using several
words, for example, "school bus".
I understand, which is why I asked the question.

I do understand the classic example of when to hyphenate compound nouns:
"A bright-red rose is redder than a bright red rose."

If I correctly interpret what you're trying to tell me, you'd prefer
(In my "vi speak", this is how I interpret it...)
and not:
(In my vi-speak, this is how I interpret it...)

Or, maybe you're suggesting the simplest form, which is:
(In my vi speak, this is how I interpret it...)

I find the last form potentially confusing to the reader, which is why I
used the hyphen, which itself I found cumbersome (for the same reasons you
did), which leaves only the first form of offsetting the concoction with
doublequotes.
Stefan Ram
2017-10-09 09:27:55 UTC
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Post by harry newton
(In my vi speak, this is how I interpret it...)
I find the last form potentially confusing to the reader
Yes, I was suggesting this form. I can't see yet how it can
be confusing. What other interpretation of "vi speak" is
possible in this sentence than the one intended by you?
harry newton
2017-10-09 21:30:55 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Yes, I was suggesting this form. I can't see yet how it can
be confusing. What other interpretation of "vi speak" is
possible in this sentence than the one intended by you?
I read all the posts in this thread to date, so I will take your (pl)
advice and hence I will refer to vi speak without accentuation.

Thanks!
Snidely
2017-10-11 08:53:23 UTC
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Post by harry newton
Post by Stefan Ram
Yes, I was suggesting this form. I can't see yet how it can
be confusing. What other interpretation of "vi speak" is
possible in this sentence than the one intended by you?
I read all the posts in this thread to date, so I will take your (pl)
advice and hence I will refer to vi speak without accentuation.
You took the advice of a non-native speaker on this, and I don't think
it's congruent with the other replies.

/dps
--
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does for Arnold Lund in California or Richard Rothman in Baltimore, are
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ask. (R. Lerhman, CSMonitor.com)
Peter Young
2017-10-09 16:14:58 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Post by harry newton
I'm just asking if I use "vi" and "speak" together, how would
you punctuate it to make it clear that it's a concoction?
Open compounds can be compound nouns written using several
words, for example, "school bus".
No special punctuation is needed.
Hyphens usually are not required (they might be used when a
compound modifier is compound itself).
leet speak
(sometimes also written "leetspeak", but never "leet-speak").
I have seen "computer-speak" written in BrE.

Peter.
--
Peter Young, (BrE, RP), Consultant Anaesthetist, 1975-2004.
(US equivalent: Certified Anesthesiologist) (AUE Pt)
Cheltenham and Gloucester, UK. Now happily retired.
http://pnyoung.orpheusweb.co.uk
Jerry Friedman
2017-10-09 13:37:46 UTC
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 (In my vi-speak, this is how I interpret it...)
Where I am concocting the word "vi-speak".
How does one better highlight the fact that the concoction is a concoction
than by using the hyphen? Would you prefer quotes, as in...
 (In my "vi speak", this is how I interpret it...)
 (The way I interpret vi is as follows ... )
I'm just asking if I use "vi" and "speak" together, how would you punctuate
it to make it clear that it's a concoction?
I like the quotation marks for that purpose, but I had no trouble
understanding your original version with a hyphen.
--
Jerry Friedman
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