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Merriam-Webster disses following heated exchange

Dictionary fight!


David Britton

Internet Culture

Published Apr 12, 2016   Updated May 26, 2021, 11:03 pm CDT

Twitter beefs are always fun to watch unfold. Who didn’t love watching Patton Oswalt insult Salon or Kanye West talk about Wiz Khalifa’s pants? What’s a little more unexpected is seeing Merriam-Webster take a shot at its biggest rival,

On Monday, tweeted a fairly mundane picture, along with a quote from author Abigail Reynolds. 

But whatever sassy intern was left in charge of Merriam-Webster’s Twitter account noticed something didn’t quite add up.

Whoa. Did one dictionary just diss another dictionary? Yes. And unless Queen Elizabeth calls Alex Trebek’s mustache gauche, that’s probably the most unexpected shade we’re likely to see this year.

Twitter users responded appropriately. tried to recover by posting an explanation, along with a GIF of its own, but it didn’t really work.

Are Dictionary reps trying to say that coffee without cream is a variation of coffee with cream? Pretty thin,, pretty thin.

In the end, they admitted defeat, and apologized the way we all do nowadays—a hashtag and a wink:

Somewhere Noah Webster is looking down and laughing his ass off.

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*First Published: Apr 12, 2016, 7:57 pm CDT