Alternative e-dictionaries: Uncovering dark practices

Hilary Nesi

in Electronic Lexicography

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199654864
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191745966 | DOI:
Alternative e-dictionaries: Uncovering dark practices

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This chapter explores some popular types of e-dictionary that have been largely ignored in the academic literature, called, for the purposes of this chapter, ‘Alternative e-dictionaries’ (AEDs). It reviews previous surveys of teacher and student attitudes to AEDs in their various formats: online, on disc, and in pocket electronic dictionaries (PEDs). It then examines the types of information contained in AEDs, which are often made up of a range of diverse resources including both up-to-date dictionaries from prestigious publishing houses, more dubious lexicographical material of uncertain provenance, user contributions to blog and discussion fora, and raw textual data taken directly from the web. The purpose of the chapter is to shed light on the 'dark practices' undertaken by many AED compilers, and to encourage teachers and metalexicographers to critique popular dictionary software, portals and PEDs so that AED users’ choices can be better informed.

Keywords: web portal; CD-ROM; Internet; pocket electronic dictionary; bilingual dictionary; learners’ dictionary; dictionary format; quality; dictionary use

Chapter.  5482 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Lexicography ; Semantics

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