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Talk:Disputed words

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Just a thought: does it matter whether they would be 'allowed on Countdown' when they're over 9 letters long? Mjbrown 23:19, 6 February 2012 (UTC)

It probably doesn't matter whether that particular word is valid by Countdown rules, but there might be parallels in words that aren't more than 9 letters long. For example, whether BRINKSMANSHIP is a valid word would tell us whether MATH is a valid word. I'd be inclined to say yes.
But there's something else I'm made to wonder about the American spellings vs. American words rule. What if a given word exists as an American spelling of an English word, but also has a meaning it doesn't have in UK English, by which it could be considered an American word? I'd thought of THEATER before (it's both the American spelling of "theatre" and the American word for "cinema"), though in that case the contestant could just declare THEATRE and not worry about it. But another example is TOTALED - it's both the American spelling of "totalled", meaning "added up", and an American word meaning "wrote off" (a vehicle).
Moreover, I can imagine there being a few cases where a BrE word has a different AmE spelling, which has derivatives that don't exist at all in BrE. How would these be handled generally? — Stewart (talk) 12:21, 12 April 2012 (BST)

"However this rule is sometimes ignored when the words do not appeal to the personal tastes of the producer, who has no training in lexicography."

Isn't it a bit harsh to put that there? Maybe it should be something along the lines of "while the presumption is that any one-syllable adjective can take comparative forms, this rule has been subject to the production team's judgement in some cases". I don't see a problem with reporting the facts and pointing out inconsistencies, but I'm not sure why there needs to be a dig at the producer in there. Graeme Cole 17:14, 27 May 2012 (BST)


  • CUMMINGS: The name of the poet e.e. cummings, given as lower case.

As I look, the headword is "cummings, e. e." not just "cummings". Therefore, surely, CUMMINGS isn't a valid word as it isn't given as a word by itself (cf. MISTLE). Does everyone agree? — Stewart (talk) 22:01, 5 November 2015 (GMT)

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