Writing for Business - A Whatis.com Blog

May 24 2012   1:26PM GMT

Expedite or expediate?

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Which is correct?

To prevent a crippling worm attack, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) urged that all users _______ application of the patch.

a. expedite

b. expediate

Answer: a.

Explanation:

Expedite is by far the better choice here.

Although I hate to have to report this, expediate is gaining acceptance as a word — although I’m happy to report that it’s not in very many dictionaries. It means expedite, which means to do something promptly or to speed up a process. I expect this is another word created because it was being used. People probably made it up as a verb form of expedient. What next — expediation instead of expedition? I’m too scared to look.

Expediate comes to me via my husband, who works at an IT firm (which shall remain nameless to prevent me from having drinks tossed in my face at the summer mixer). A coworker used it in a construction similar to the one I used above. The hub’s workplace is a fruitful source of blog fodder — his boss inspired the mute point post.

Expediate was featured in the Worthless Word for the Day list.

What horrific grammatical errors are you hearing in the wilds of  IT and business? Let me know!

Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

1  Comment on this Post

 
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  • dideegman
    Couldn't agree more - my boss has adopted expediate after being exposed during steering committees with our IT provider. Every time she says it - I bite my tongue, as correction is most surely a career limiting move. Or would be expediatious (!!) of early retirement ...
    Di - in Sydney, Australia
    10 pointsBadges:
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