Ridiculous neologism of the month No. 1


I’m an open-minded kind of guy, I accept that language changes, that people coin neologisms (new words) all the time. I even accept that some of them aren’t the worst words I’ve ever heard. When I saw “organogram”, however, I nearly fell out of my chair.

I first came across it a few weeks ago and, since then, have encountered it twice more. My spellchecker, fortunately, continues to underline it. Maybe it will appear in Word 2012 (along with the apocalypse!). So what is an organogram? Any guesses? It’s nothing like a telegram or anything to do with organs or organic food or even a typo of “oregano gram”. Still have no idea?

It’s an organisation diagram. Obviously. Why people have decided that these two words are much too long is far beyond me and I am unable to see what’s wrong with the much simpler “management structure” or “organisation(al) structure”. I suppose one should be mildly grateful that we don’t have “managrams” or “organotures” but I fear I am tempting fate and will shut up now.

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2 Responses to Ridiculous neologism of the month No. 1

  1. Charlie October 5, 2010 at 12:58 am #

    If “organogram” (4 syllables) was created to reduce word length, then why not use “org chart” (2 syllables)?

  2. Will October 5, 2010 at 10:13 am #

    Indeed, Charlie, why not? I suppose the sort of company to use “organogram” would probably fear its readers would be unable to work out what “org” could possibly be short for.

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