“The client’s ask is simple,” he said, “but I’m not convicted that’s a good criteria; anyhow, there are important learnings for us.” How much of that do you hate? Whatever; living languages don’t care what you think.
The awful truth · English, among languages, is a shiftless tramp, equally at home in the alleys behind mansions and hovels. It’s always ready to pilfer a scrumptious linguistic pie left to cool on a metaphorical windowsill, or fetid food-waste from the metaphorical gutter.
These growths on English’s not-so-fair face are harvested from the hallways and meeting rooms of North American high-tech, which is after all renowned for its creativity.
Which is to say, let’s consider neologisms on their merits. Not that that’ll do any good, often the lamest stick while the jewels crumble.
“ask” n. · I actually kinda like this one. Yes, you could say it before, along the lines of “the specific item that was requested” or “the core demand” or some such. No, it’s not a synonym of “request”. It’s only got three letters. It’s a nouned verb, which is rarer than a verbed noun. Good on it.
“criteria” n. sing. · This one hurts my brain, but Latin’s admonitions about pluralization are coming, after all, from the language graveyard; when did you last say “datum”? I hear it more and more. I defiantly say “criterion” given the slightest chance but find my passive-aggressive usage policing rarely even noticed. Also, there are these kids on my lawn.
“learning” n. · I never heard this before I went to work for Google and now I hear it everywhere, so let’s all see if we can drive Alphabet’s share price down until they promise to make it stop. Oh wait, I’m still a shareholder.
There will be those who point out that by replacing a descendent of Latin lectionem with an ordinary verb participle we actually add regularity to English, which in general could really use it. There’s a lesson in there somewhere.
“convicted” adj. · Ewwww. Blecch. I mean, seriously. The leap from “conviction“ to the past participle of an inferred verb is sort of wryly daring, I suppose. But were there a court somewhere with jurisdiction over really stinky neologisms, this one would be found guilty.