The formation of word

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It’s a complex language, English. When the environment changes in all ways, so does the linguistic means of communication. For example, developments in the fashion industry result in new vocabulary. Four of the key factors that contribute to word-formation include a shift of context (bully), trending occurrences (Brexit), while other vocabulary elements simply become redundant. It is also important to keep up with the tendency of the evolution of language. The goal of the current paper is therefore to analyze the various forms of word-forming (Lieber 375). The role posed in the assignment is primarily concerned with information and technology. However, there are other general vocabulary items underlined in the statements, the formation processes of which are also to be discussed. The general methods involved in the creation of the words highlighted in the 12 sentences are collectively described below.


The first process of word formation is blending. It is common in English. Two vocabulary items are often combined with their sound structures. The words that are produced are known as blends. The morpheme compositions of the involved speech elements are not taken into account. One part of the word is often stitched onto another phrase not paying attention to the beginning and the end of a morpheme (Bauer 29). For example, the blend “swooshtika” is formed from the words swoosh and swastika. The resultant meaning formation comprises the the properties of the both language items. Therefore, the so called an in-between word is generated. In this task the following words are generated by blending:

Netiquette = internet (net) + etiquette. The meaning of the word is etiquette of the internet.

Netizen = internet + citizen. It means a person who is always engrossed in internet stuff.

Webcam = web + camera.

Thus, blending has been used in the above cases to derive new words whose meanings are not far from the parent names.


The second process employed in the formation of the words in the task is acronyms. It involves the picking of the initial letters of words to form a shortened phrase. Acronyms is the most straightforward process that can be used in the word formation. The resultant name may be used as an accepted word. In some cases, other letters apart from the initial ones may be picked from the phrases (Lipka 45). Three words from the assigned task are formed by acronyms. These are:

RAM = Random Access Memory. The name refers to an internal storage space in a computer. The first letters of the original words are used to produce it.

Ruok = means “are you okay”. As stated above, some acronyms may be formed with other letters of the word other than the initials. The word “are” is taken as “r”, while “you” are substituted with the letter “u.” The first two letters of the word are just randomly picked.

FAQ = formed from the phrase Frequently Asked Questions. This word has a similar formation to the first one provided above.

Therefore, the acronym is equally another way of generating words.


Further, words may be formed through the process of conversion. It implies a change of functionality of a language item from one form to another without any alterations in its structure. Conversion is also referred to as zero derivation. It may be further categorized as verbification and nominalization. Verbification or verbing is the use of a noun, adjective, or any other word to generate a verb (Plag 125). For instance, the names drink, dress and divorce may be used as verbs without having to change the word structure. In the task at hand, the technology-related nouns, namely “keyboard” and “bookmark” have been used as verbs. Nominalization, on the other side, signifies the generation of a noun from an adjective, verb, or adverb. In the given assignment, the term “downloads” has been used as a noun which may also function as a verb. Therefore, the conversion makes up another way of generating new words in English and especially IT industry.


Clipping is another vocabulary formation process in linguistics. It is described as shortening or reduction of the parts of a word to form a new one which possesses the same meaning as the original word. Clipping may also be regarded as truncation of words. For instance, the name “rifle” was initially “rifle gun”, thus the last part was trimmed and the initial meaning retained. In this assignment, the word “app” is used instead of the “application”. The term is commonly used in IT area (Lipka 81). Therefore, clipped words are recognized in English as another way of word formation.


Finally, affixation is another approach to create new vocabulary items. It involves the addition of suffixes and prefixes to the initial words to get ones with the different meanings. In this task, affixation was employed in the formation of “techie” and “blogger” (Lieber 377). Therefore, new words may be coined using different methods.


In conclusion, there are diverse word formation processes. Various methods were utilized in the task which has been adequately described above. However, conversion is the most flexible approach that can be applied in the IT domain for the formation of new words through verbification and nominalization. The other processes are slightly rigid compared to this one. Hence, conversion is the most critical formation process to the IT field.

Works Cited

Bauer, Laurie. English Word-Formation. Cambridge University Press, 1983.

Lieber, Rochelle. “English Word-Formation Processes.” Handbook of Word-Formation, edited by Pavol Štekauer and Rochelle Lieber, Springer Netherlands, 2005, pp. 375-427.

Lipka, Leonhard. An Outline of English Lexicology: Lexical Structure, Word Semantics, and Word-Formation. Walter de Gruyter & Co, 1990.

Plag, Ingo. Word Formation in English. Cambridge University Press, 2003.

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