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And then there's ISO (as in ISO 9001), which is an initialism for...
From: Fred Ridder
Sent: Thursday, April 19, 2012 2:50 PM
To: guy -at- hiskeyboard -dot- com; techwr-l -at- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: Conference Swag
Yes, whether it's spelled "bacronym" or "backronym", it is a great word.
And it apparently was submitted in a newspaper neologism contest about
20 years ago.
The Wikipedia article has some interesting examples of backronymization
of real names, including the AMBER Alert System (which was originally
named for an abducted girl named Amber), and the APGAR test for newborns
(which was originally named for Dr. Apgar).
Another interesting backronym is RPG, which goes not actually stand for
"rocket-propelled grenade". RPG originally was a legitimate initialism
in the Russian language for a phrase that meant "hand-held anti-tank
grenade launcher". But once NATO analysts started to use the term to
describe Soviet arms, soldiers came up with an English language phrase
that fit the letters, forming a backronym before backronyms had a name.
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