6 Things BuzzFeed’s Style Guide Tells Us About What’s Happening to Language


News organizations’ style guides, along with fusty cousins like dictionaries and encyclopedias, don’t have a reputation for being super-casual or quick to adapt. The New York Times, for instance, made the decision to get with what the kids are doing and drop the hyphen from emailjust four months ago. But the situation is different over at BuzzFeed, a media site that this week compiled a long list of reasons grilled cheese sandwiches are better than boyfriends.

On Tuesday, the irreverent outlet published its internal style guide online. Many of the entries are funny in a bathetic way, mixing serious rules that BuzzFeed writers must follow with words one might find in the tweets of a mouthy tween (see: the instruction to always hyphenate d-bag). And because the outlet is so purposefully conversational and current, many of the entries also reflect zeitgeist-y language trends. Here are…

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