Termed Out Nice Again

In 2013, I made a key discovery that disturbed and distressed core members of the non-conformist maverick community on a global basis dot dot dot… In America (or so it appeared) a key lexical marker of non-conformist maverickness was rapidly declining in terms of core usage, thusly:

At the same time, the non-conformist maverick community in Britain had maintained their core commitment to this key lexical marker of etc, thusly:

I expressed my puzzlement at the decline of “in terms of” in America. I couldn’t see a linguistic explanation and should (I now realize) have expressed doubts about the reliability of the data. Yes, in 2020 I’m very happy to report to members of the non-conformist maverick community that they need be disturbed and distressed no longer. The term has turned and it seems Google’s nGram wasn’t working properly at that time-period. Key statistics for core usage of “in terms of” are now in core accordance with key expectations, thusly:

“in terms of” (American English)

(open in new tab for larger image)


“in terms of” (British English)

Sadly, however, non-conformist mavericks in French- and Spanish-speaking countries seem to have stopped being non-conformist:

“en termes de” (French)


“en términos de” (Spanish)


Peri-Performative Post-Scriptum

The title of this incendiary intervention radically referencizes a key catchphrase of core comedian George Formby (1904-61), viz, “turned out nice again”. Formby’s home-county of Lancashire (England) was — and remains — a core hotbed of non-conformist maverickness dot dot dot

Core discussion around “in terms of”…

Septics vs Dirties

Some interesting patterns at Google’s Ngram Viewer (please follow the links to see the original images with further statistics):

in terms of (American + British English)

in terms of (American + British English)


in terms of (American English)

in terms of (American English)


in terms of (British English)

in terms of (British English)


issues around (American + British English)

issues around (American + British English)


issues around (American English)

issues around (American English)


issues around (British English)

issues around (British English)


Previously pre-posted (please peruse):

Titus Graun
Ex-term-in-ate!
Reds under the Thread