Not Actually Jenny (jennyanydots21) wrote,
Not Actually Jenny

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Thoughts on "reversion"

Have been reading Steven Pinker's The Stuff of Thought recently - pleased to discover that the linguistics part of my brain hasn't gone entirely rusty - and for some reason this had me thinking about the use of the term "revert", in the sense that people's annoying bosses* use it.

The email:
Please read the following list and revert back to me with any comments or edits.

What your boss means:
Please read the following list and email a response to me, with any comments or edits.

What you** interpret from this:
Please read the following list and then return to your previous state, in which you were, in fact, me.

So the recipient is a figment of the boss's imagination, or some sort of employee-construct homunculus whose sole purpose is to do the bosses's bidding before being reabsorbed back into The Boss, like some kind of primordial extra limb. (This is a pretty reasonable assessment of Anet's employee relations, actually.)

Or... this is a perfectly reasonable new/emerging use of the term "revert", and I should get the hell over it. (But did I ever tell you about the time these employers made me spend a whole afternoon chasing a pigeon?)

[Edit: Wow, "bosses's" is totally not a word.]

*Specifically, my annoying boss from three years ago.
** By "you", I mean "I", which sort of invalidates my entire argument here.
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