Throughout the year, the people who appear on the Allusionist tell me a lot of interesting stuff. Not all of which is relevant to the episode they initially appeared in, so I stash it away in preparation for this moment: the annual bonus episode! Get ready for gory 19th century London slang, the rise and fall of superhero capes, the post-WW1 trend for nudism, and more.Read More
Got a company or a product or a website you need to name? Well, be wary of the potential pitfalls: trademark disputes; pronounceability; being mistaken for a dead body...
Name developer Nancy Friedman explains how she helps companies find the right names, and why so many currently end in '-ify'.
Plus: The Allusionist's origin story, with Radiotopiskipper Roman Mars.Read More
Remember when 'viral' used to only mean something bad, IE something that would make you ill or destroy your computer?
How things have changed. Tom Phillips from BuzzFeed UK explains how they choose the language to make their content go viral. Why does Buzzfeed steer clear of round numbers, sarcasm and irony? Will the internet ever reach Peak Hyperbole? What's the curiosity gap and how do you cross it? Find out all by listening to the show via iTunes, SoundCloud, or through your favoured podcast directory. The RSS feed is http://feeds.theallusionist.org/Allusionist.
A bit of additional reading:
- Buzzfeed not only analyses its own language, but also that of White House press secretaries to discover which president's regime is the cagiest.
- Here's BuzzFeed's style guide, for your interest.
- If you can't be bothered to study it, Time has interpreted its linguistic signifance for you.
MAILCHIMP'S RANDOMLY SELECTED WORD FROM THE DICTIONARY:
This episode was sponsored by Squarespace.com. Use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off their website-hosting and -building services for a year, during which you'll be spewing out viral content like nobody's business.
Despite my mild cynicism in this episode about the imperative to share content far and wide, you are of course more than welcome to share this episode - and to say hi at facebook.com/allusionistshow and twitter.com/allusionistshow.
Presented and produced by Helen Zaltzman.
'Allusionist Theme' - Martin Austwick
'Chocolate Rain' [instrumental] - Tay Zonday
'Gangnam Style' [instrumental] - PSY