Months ago I initiated a proposal to eliminate the
because of exactly the problem that has manifested in this thread: it takes
a serious crime and trivializes it, fostering confusion on a subject where
victims already have a very difficult time making themselves heard and
Once people have started using a word in a certain way you can't start
pretending that they haven't. There is such a thing as cyberstalking,
and I would tend to interpret wikistalking as a subset of that.
Cyberstalking may very well have little if anything in common with
"real" stalking, and use of that term may indeed result in
trivialization. That doesn't change the fact that people use the word
in the way that they do. That's why it's so important to begin by
making sure we are all talking about the same thing.
Rules and laws will generally assume an ordinary dictionary definition
in the absence of an onsite definition to override that. Where a word
has multiple meanings a reader has the option to use whichever of those
definitions suits him. This also applies where different dictionaries
have different definitions, or usage has already gone beyond the
dictionary. English dictionaries, in particular are more descriptive
than prescriptive. Thus we sacrifice dictionary certainty for the sake
of having a richer environment of word formation.
In cases of doubt one defines one's terms, and applies that definition
strictly. That does wonders for maintaining focus in a subject.
With the notable exception of Gerard and a few others,
this conversation is
occurring on an absurd level.
Do we do any better by keeping it at an anecdotal
It's as if David Shankbone had stepped
forward to announce that his car had been stolen, and responses had confused
real auto theft with the game "Grand Theft Auto."
Who's David Shankbone? I don't see where anyone has said that any of
these stalking claims were only a part of some video game.