I went from Lingstitute to Washington DC, where I did some internet linguistic consulting work, and met up with some DC linguists, including Ann Friedman and several members of the
Planet Word Advisory Board, which I am now on as well! I’m excited to be getting involved with this project to create a linguistics museum.
I then went to SpaceWitchCon, in the woods of North Carolina, where I ran
a very fun session about internet linguistics (and also did a lot of singalongs and crafting and other excellent nerdery).
Later in the month, I was on live TV with Al Jazeera’s The Stream,
talking about emoji ( watch here), and a post of mine, about how to talk with your academic heroes and other people you admire, was featured on Thesis Whisperer.
This month’s Lingthusiasm episode was about
Layers of meaning: Cooperation, humour, and Gricean Maxims, and the bonus episode was about language play. We also reached our Patreon interview goal, so you can look forward to hearing guest linguists on Lingthusiasm shortly!
Selected blog posts:
This month’s photo is a sign from SpaceWitch: the rooms were divided into even and odd sections, so I took this picture for those times when you can’t even anymore: here’s some even!
consulting, emoji, internet linguistics, interviews, linguistics jobs, memes, movies, podcasts, speaking, talks, the toast, tv, videos
Sep · 08
I wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post:
Herefefe is why it’s toughfefe to say “covfefe”, which was inspired by a twitter thread of mine that became massively popular and was picked up by the Guardian, Longreads, and El Pais (Spanish).
I moderated a panel about careers in linguistics at the
annual meeting of the Canadian Linguistics Association, part of the Canadian Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences in Toronto.
It was my 5-year blogiversary!
Here’s a list of some of my favourite posts on All Things Linguistic from the past year.
Episode 8 of Lingthusiasm was about People who make dictionaries, and contained our thoughts about Kory Stamper’s new book, Word by Word. We also posted a new Patreon bonus about selling your linguistics skills to employers, a follow-up Space Pidgin quote, and officially reached our sustainability goal on Patreon, so now we can start expanding!
Selected blog posts:
This month’s featured image is from making a couple Lingthusiasm buttons at the Scholar’s Portal booth in the Congress Expo! Now I just need to get one of them to Lauren and find us an occasion to wear them…
conferences, internet linguistics, lingthusiasm, linguistics jobs, livetweets, op ed, politics, pop culture, reviews, speaking, talks, twitter, washington post
Jun · 03
Many talks and travel in March! I began the month in Hawai’i, where I ran several
lingwiki editathons at the International Conference on Language Documentation and Conservation ( #icldc5) and also got to attend the Hilo Field Study and learn about Hawaiian language revitalization.
I then headed directly to South by Southwest, where
I moderated a panel called Word Curation: Dictionaries, Tech and the Future with Erin McKean (Wordnik), Jane Solomon (Dictionary.com), and Ben Zimmer (Wall Street Journal). We also stayed in a house together and played word games, and Erin, Jane, and I judged an emoji spelling bee organized by Jenny 8 Lee and other people from EmojiCon.
While the conferences themselves were very different, fortunately the weather in Hawai’i and Texas was very similar – warm and sometimes rainy!
My final talk of the month was at the Princeton linguistics department, where I gave a colloquium talk entitled How I Became An Internet Linguist. I also
livetweeted Kory Stamper’s new book, Word by Word, and then got to hang out with her and several other cool lexicography people in NYC on the way to Princeton.
In the meantime, I was quoted in two articles in the New York Times, on
Snapchat and phatic communication by Farhad Manjoo and on The communicative function of emoji (Gaymoji) in Grindr by Guy Trebay. The first episode of Lingthusiasm was also featured in NY Mag’s Science of Us and on #SciFriLive (Science Friday on NPR).
The sixth episode of Lingthusiasm came out, about the International Phonetic Alphabet. Listen to the
episode on SoundCloud (or wherever you get your podcasts), read the transcript, or check out the links in the shownotes. My cohost Lauren Gawne and I also launched a Patreon to help keep the podcast growing, with a bonus episode about swearing and a video featuring a cameo from our producer.
Selected blog posts:
This month’s featured image is from playing word games at the words house at SXSW. This particular game is known as Codenames and it was great fun.
collaborations, conferences, dictionary dot com, editathon, emoji, faq, internet linguistics, interviews, lingthusiasm, lingwiki, livetweets, NPR, reviews, speaking, storify, sxsw, talks, tweets, twitter
Apr · 18
I gave a talk about Stumbling into linguistics via blogs and Wikipedia at a panel on Getting High School Students into Linguistics which I co-organized with Moti Lieberman at the Linguistic Society of America annual meeting in Austin, Texas. My slides are at
bit.ly/lingwiki-lsa2017 and our whole panel’s slides and abstracts are available here.
I also gave a talk about how people lengthen words on Twitter at the LSA, co-authored with Jeffrey Lamontagne – you can check out our slides at
bit.ly/longggg. ( Here’s a fun example that came up later.)
I ran a Wikipedia editathon for the third year in a row at the LSA –
here’s a report on the articles edited (and a bonus post on Wikipedia rabbit holes).
I also did
PR for the LSA again this year and was on the judging panel for the 5 Minute Linguist competition. If you missed the livetweets, you can relive the LSA using the hashtag #lsa2017.
fourth episode of Lingthusiasm came to you from inside the Word of the Year vote and we got fanmail!
linguistics jobs interview with Jane Solomon, a lexicographer at Dictionary.com.
a helpful acrostic of how to spell my last name to my website and email signature.
This month’s image is “lingthusiasm” sketched out in the sand, with the logo added by a helpful wave.
collaborations, conferences, dictionary dot com, editathon, interviews, lingthusiasm, linguistics jobs, lingwiki, livetweets, lsa, podcasts, politics, speaking, talks, twitter
Feb · 09
This month, I attended
the first EmojiCon in San Francisco. I gave a talk about the mistake people make in assuming that emoji are a language, and three paralinguistic things that emoji do instead ( in column form, and here’s a visualization of it), and met a lot of interesting people. You can see livetweets from the event at the #EmojiCon hashtag and I’m quoted in this article about it for TIME.
article on teen girls as language disruptors, which I wrote for Quartz last year, was republished in a print textbook from Oxford University Press, Making Sense of Language, and my copy of the book finally arrived in the mail.
I revised and updated
my annual guide for explaining linguistics to your friends and family this holiday season. See also: my archive of linguistmas posts and 2016 linguistics merch.
Like all linguists this month, I went and saw the linguistics sci fi movie Arrival. Here are
a few comments from me, another linguist’s twitter thread, linguistics cut scenes from the screenwriter, and a full list of linguistics media coverage. I also wrote a guide to more linguistics for people who liked Arrival, which I cross-posted to Medium. (Plus: an Arrival recruitment poster and meme.)
Selected blog posts:
This month’s image is a bunch of emoji-themed art by Yiying Lu from the exhibit at EmojiCon. I spent much of the conference deeply embedded in Unicode geekery but the art definitely makes a better photo.
book, christmas, conferences, emoji, explainling, internet linguistics, movies, quartz, reviews, sociolinguistics, speaking, talks, tweets, twitter
Dec · 08
In October, I gave a talk about emoji and why they aren’t language at the Dawn or Doom conference at Purdue University. You can see
slides here or just look at the fantastic visualization that The Ink Factory made of my talk. I also got to meet Jorge Cham and many other cool people.
I found out that our South by Southwest panel proposal was accepted, so you can look for me in Austin, Texas in 2017 with Ben Zimmer, Jane Solomon, and Erin McKean talking about
Word Curation: Dictionaries, Tech, and the Future.
Linguist Twitter had a lot of fun making #SpookyTalesForLinguists happen –
see highlights or just go for the whole hashtag.
I’m quoted in several articles:
I ran a linguistics jobs
interview with a health writer and noted with great excitement that plans are beginning for an AP linguistics course. I’ll be doing a panel about high school linguistics outreach at the LSA annual meeting in January.
I’m currently heading to EmojiCon in San Francisco, where I’ll be giving a workshop, so stay tuned for
Selected blog posts:
This month’s bookshelfie comes from Von’s Book Shop near Purdue University, but really, let’s just look at that visualization again. Amazing.
bookshelfies, conferences, consulting, dictionary dot com, emoji, internet linguistics, interviews, linguist humour, linguistics jobs, politics, selfies, speaking, sxsw, talks, tweets
Nov · 02
I hit a book milestone: I finished the second major draft!
Details and sneak peaks into the writing process. I also made a central information page for the book.
I was quoted in two articles,
That time when “That time when” took over the Internet (Washington Post) and the evolution of emoji from emoticons (Japan Times). I also storified the Beowulf/Hamilton crossover, #Wulf4Ham.
I restarted the series of interviews for the linguistics jobs series on All Things Linguistic, with the help of Elena Russo, and also created
a handy linguistics jobs overview page. New interviews: with a book publicist, science fiction writer, and policy analyst.
I’m currently heading to
Dawn or Doom, a conference at Purdue University about technology and culture, where I’ll be giving a talk about the linguistics of emoji, so you can keep an eye on #DawnOrDoom for livetweets! I also announced this month that I’ll be giving a workshop at EmojiCon in November in the Bay Area.
Selected blog posts:
This month’s bookshelfie is a photo I took when I stopped in Reykjavik briefly on my way back from the UK in May.
Mál og Menning didn’t have much of a linguistics section, but the balcony and hanging bird cutouts were charming anyway.
book, bookshelfies, conferences, emoji, internet linguistics, interviews, linguistics jobs, pop culture, speaking, storify, tweets
Oct · 02