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Blog de Michel Politis, Professeur au Département de Langues Étrangères, de Traduction et d'Interprétation de l'Université ionienne (Corfou - Grèce)

Σάββατο, 22 Ιανουαρίου 2011

LOL,CEI, CIO, CFO, COO, CLO, MDR, NABISCO Do you speak acronym?

How, why and where did we start speaking in sets of capital letters?

LOL began life as “laughing out loud”, a way for internet chatters to explain a long pause in typing. The French too play with text-speak. Though many will happily import LOL from English, they may also write MDR, mort de rire, “dead from laughing”.

Walk into any business and a cloud of three-lettered titles surrounds you. The one who used to be just the boss, or the managing director, now styles himself the CEO - chief executive officer. This alone would be one thing, but it turned into a viral infection: CIO, CTO, CFO, COO, CLO, and so on, for what used to be the heads of technology, finance and operations, and the company lawyer. They all form the so-called C-suite. Brand managers also follow the trend. In 1901 the National Biscuit Company sought a trademark for a new short form of its name—NABISCO. The “co” trend took off, especially with oil companies (Texaco, Conoco, Sunoco), using a different kind of acronym, one that pulls together first syllables, not just letters.

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