a-z tech jargon
Business Management

The real meaning of… the e-prefix

Got a product or service of which you are deeply ashamed? Want to make sure nobody ever sees it? You need to use the world’s least imaginative naming scheme, the e-prefix.

While the name Shameful Product might stand out in listings and could draw attention, there is no danger of that happening with an e-prefix. By naming it e-shameful product you can guarantee it will be buried under a seemingly endless pile of bland offerings with equally bland titles starting with e-.

Any computer-related product will be electronic. Since the beginning of the computer age there have been trillions of products. Amazingly, half of the marketing managers who name them are so devoid of any imagination that they stick an ‘e-’ in front of the product name. It’s not big or clever or modern; it’s actually small, stupid and dated. The e-prefix makes it sounds like your proudest boast for the product is that it uses this new-fangled invention, electronics. Electronic commerce, eh? Whatever will they think of next?

It gets worse though. The e-prefix is beyond old fashioned, it’s unforgivably rude. You’ve created a proper noun, but insisted that its first letter is in lower case. So it can’t be used at the start of a sentence without mucking up the structure. In other words, you’re announcing that you’re too good to obey the conventions of our shared language. There’s no better way to make journalists, typesetters and publishers instantly resent you.

So let’s draw a veil over all companies and products and concepts that begin with a lower case letter. They’re e-rude, e-conceited and e-resented.

With an e-prefix, you are guaranteed e-nonymity. And you deserve it.


Also read:

The real meaning of… ‘As A Service’

The real meaning of… Bitcoin

The real meaning of… Chatbots

The real meaning of… Disruptive Technology


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Nick Booth

Nick Booth worked in IT in the UK’s National Health Service, financial services and The Met Police, witnessing at first hand the disruptive effects of new technology. As a journalist and analyst, his mission is to stop history repeating itself.

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