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The word "drop"

It strikes me as a fairly recent phenomenon that the word "drop" has acquired a meaning which is almost the opposite of what the word normally means.

For example, I recently read a headline online about a major retailer who just "dropped" its big Fourth of July sales. To me, that means that they are cancelling the sales, but the intended meaning was that they have announced the sales and will go ahead with them.

This word confuses me a lot now. I am never sure how formally or informally the tone is supposed to be, so I am not sure if someone is saying one thing or the opposite!

OK, end of "old guy" rant!
ArishMell · 70-79, M
I must admit I'd not seen or heard that but I agree.

Wilfully misusing words in that way might not matter much when advertising sales of goods you neither need nor want anyway; but in other situations can be seriously misleading.

Or at best, simply create poor metaphors that make you think the speaker does not really understand the subject, let alone the term's real meaning.

Of the latter case, I offer:

"Seismic [shift]" (the first a genuine technical term; the second word, merely slang),

"Trajectory" (Do you mean a trajectory or a course?)

"Epicentre" (Do you mean an epicentre or a centre?)

.... and I'm sure there are others!


I sold my first home in the thankfully short-lived era of the "Home Information Pack" - an exercise in pointless, expensive bureaucracy if ever there were. It used tick-box forms used by hapless "surveyors" who were not expected to know much about buildings, despite paying out of their own pockets for an expensive, residential "Training Course". The only tick-box option for my "surveyor" said my house was built of "granite", just because it was of stone. Was it heck granite! No more any igneous rock than Wensleydale Cheese. It was built of of its local stone, the famous "Portland Stone", a Jurassic marine limestone. The form had been designed by some ignoramus who knew nowt about building materials, nor basic geology.
@ArishMell More and more we’re getting nonsensical writings, I suspect from free-lancers, who have to learn about the topic before they write about the topic.
katydidnt · 61-69, F
I've recently felt visceral "huh?" moments but have quickly gotten accustomed to "drop" used in the sense mentioned. There are other instances of its being used to introduce, rather than to discontinue: "Drop a hint," for example. (I'm not always this easy; I'm still smarting over "ask" as a noun.)
DrWatson · 70-79, M
@Mamapolo2016 I have not heard of that one!
DrWatson · 70-79, M
@katydidnt Good point!
@DrWatson Big on local news.
I am Dutch, and our country the name for black licorice is drop

iamnikki · 31-35, F
Hmm, I haven't thought about this. I guess because it isn't new. For example, one may say that so and so just dropped a new album.

But I understand how it can be confusing.
DrWatson · 70-79, M
@iamnikki To someone my age, "dropped a new album" is "new". 😄
iamnikki · 31-35, F
@DrWatson I imagine how things will be when I'm that age. Sometimes I feel that age now. I don't have any social media, and people look at me like I have 3 heads when I say it 😄
Primnproper · 56-60, F
I think it uses dropped in the context that its landed. I've heard it used here in the UK, too.
DrWatson · 70-79, M
@Primnproper Ah! I hadn't thought of it that way. (I had connected it with "drop the mike", as in "look at how we nailed this!") At any rate, it is still confusing to me! lol

Come to think of it, "nailed" wasn't always used that way either....😃
Primnproper · 56-60, F
@DrWatson 😆
They have to stop changing words.

Right now.
DrWatson · 70-79, M
@Mamapolo2016 Yep. They need to drop those word changes that they just dropped!
@DrWatson Move carefully. They’ll suck you into circles.
SunshineGirl · 36-40, F
I agree, it seems counter-intuitive as "to drop" is normally taken to mean loss of control or something falling to a lower level.

But I just took a look at Cambridge English Dictionary and other uses include: "to drop someone a line"; "to drop a hint"; "to drop anchor". All of which I think could be taken to mean targeting a specific object or objective. Which could be more in line with the above context.

Or perhaps I am over-thinking 🤔
4meAndyou · F
As long as they are not squatting with their trousers down when they "drop" things, I am fine with it. 🤣🤣🤣

Language is ever changing. We can't stop its evolution.
Can you please share the link for reference.
This is sooo relatable ! One thing about having a 23 year old niece and 21 year old godson is that I can occasionally text something with, "please translate this for the senior". 👩🏽‍🦳

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