A PSA: recreation vs. re-creation

Recreation vs. Re-Creation

I read a lot of certain kinds of blogs: food, nail art, DIY lifestyle. (I read a lot of animal blogs, too, but the issue I’m about to describe comes up less frequently there for reasons that will soon become obvious.) There’s a certain amount of borrowing that happens in these communities and it’s generally considered above board so long as credit is given.

This, my friends, is where we encounter the scourge. Somehow, for reasons that are not immediately apparent to me, the English-speaking world has forgotten a critical hyphen. All day I encounter post after post touting “amazing recreations.” These aren’t articles about impressive outdoor adventures or extreme hobbyists, oh no. These are simply people trying to give credit and failing spectacularly.

It’s simple. If you want to add the prefix “re-” to a verb to indicate the action has taken place again, usually you should “close it up” (shove that prefix right up against the verb). The exception is when a closed-up word that starts with re- already exists! Example: to recollect is to remember something; to re-collect is to collect again. See? Simple!

The internet loves infographics, right? Well, internet, I made you one.

PSA: recreation vs. re-creation

 

One comment

  1. Nancy – July 3, 2014 at 13:18

    Now if you could educate the internet and the rest of society the difference in “there”, “their”, and “they’re”, my late English teacher and I would be happy.

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