fun facts for grammatically neurotic dumpster divers

Did you know that the word “dumpster” is technically supposed to be capitalized? Like “Kleenex,” “Styrofoam,” and “Xerox” before them, the mighty Dumpster is actually a patented product name.

I don’t bother capitalizing it here because sometimes I care more about consistency (in proofing) than in correctness and because I kind of feel like product names don’t really deserve capitals. Too bad the irritating red underline that lurks from the center of my spell checker doesn’t agree. But shhh, it hasn’t heard about the word “Dumpster” just yet.

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Thursday February 17th 2011, 7:10 am 4 Comments
Filed under: conspiracies,dumpster diving,freegan,words, writing

4 Comments so far. Please leave a comment.

I didn’t know that about Dumpsters! And hey, I bet if you coined a term, you’d want it to be recognized by spell-checkers and Dumpster-divers the world round.

But yes, it looks rather strange capitalized.

Comment by Jill 02.17.11 @ 6:02 pm

I’m afraid it is long pas genericized:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genericized_trademark and no longer has trademark protection. So feel free to keep the first letter small. Unless of course you are writing in German.

Comment by GinBerlin 02.17.11 @ 7:43 pm

Interesting GinBerlin. I do feel free to write it in lower case, as you’ve probably noticed. But I have also noticed that all the books I have about people dumpster diving do the caps. Maybe it’s still in the AP or Chicago manuals.

Comment by clickclackgorilla 02.18.11 @ 2:08 am

That’s pretty funny that you even think about that. I do to, but I’m definitely grammatically neurotic. Except when I choose not to be. Like just now. Because these are sentence fragments.

Comment by Jane@ The Borrowed Abode 02.18.11 @ 4:09 pm




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