Excellent! I've added it. :)
Chet Meek (firstname.lastname@example.org)
[If this excerpt seems derogatory, know that it is taken out of a very
positive context. -ojo]
>If you want this collection to have a certain amount of
>legitimacy, then perhaps you could consider a "just for fun"
>section, where most of my submissions could go, for example,
>along with perhaps others. Then, you could have the benefit
>of a more-or-less legitimate section, where origins,
>examples from the literature, etc., could be
>housed, and serious debate carried on. In that case, the fun
>section could just be for the casual information and
>amusement of those looking for less rigor.
The format of the page will change soon, when i get the dictionaries.
They are going to provide a huge amount of data - far too much to list in
a single page. At that point, i intend to have an index for browsing and
a search utility for finding nouns for specific collections. Perhaps the
search and/or browse engine should have a selection list for "show
anything/show only documented collectives/show only suggested collectives"?
I just received the call that "An Exaltation of Larks" has arrived!
[sent on 9/20/1996]
Attached to the end of this document you'll find a submission i
recently received. I just don't know what to do about this one. I'm
currently working on a rules document to define "collective noun" for use
in submissions. However, if any, this submission seems to break only
the rather dubious rule 4. Here's the rough draft:
For the purposes of submission/suggestion, a collective noun is a
noun, used to describe a collection of objects, which:
- Can be used as a plural ("She attended two classes.").
- Implies the described object without the necessity of stating
it explicitly ("He's on the jury.").
- Is not exclusively a container ("a carton of eggs") or unit of
measurement ("a ream of paper").
- Refers to the collection of the described object, not an
instance of such a collection ("a kindle of kittens in a basket",
not "a basket of kittens").
This is all very vague, and i'm far from ready to publish this info on
the site. Actually, the only rule i'm comfortable with is number 1.
As is often the way with these things, there seems to be an exception
for every rule.
Please offer any suggestions/corrections you might have; they'll be
[sent on 9/12/1996]
Well, though i've made a few additions to the page, the reason for
this mail is that i've ordered two titles from the bibliography, "An
Exaltation of Larks" and "A Crash of Rhinoceroses". They should be here
in two weeks and six weeks, respectively, so expect some major growth and
documentation in the site around that time. I'll be sure to let you know.
I've added a book to the bibliography.
I've linked the Server Stats page to the index.
Thanks so much for your submissions. I've caught up on the credits
page; If you're not listed but should be, please let me know.
Coming soon: Vote on suggested collective nouns!
[sent on 8/9/1996]
Well, three months and still no list server. After returning from my
lengthy vacation in the northeast, i rebuilt the mailing list that was
lost in the ISPs hard drive failure. I'll be running the mailing list
personally, and am currently persuing two potential sponsors for the list
If you get a few minutes, please review the website; i've made several
changes, and would greatly appreciate any feedback/criticism you might
I intend to make some major modifications to the site. If you have an
opinion about color schemes, let me know. I'll soon try a few to test
Also, i'm entertaining the notion of creating a voting area on the
site, or perhaps taking votes solely from this mailing list, before
placing a suggested collective noun on the main page. The only reason
for this is the potential for a flooding of submissions, now that the
page is growing in popularity (average 50 hits a day, and climbing).
Thanks for your time. As ever, i'm anxious to hear from you.
[sent on 4/6/1996]
The page has undergone some radical changes in the past two days,
moving everything but the "instructions" to its own page. Comments on
the new format are welcome.
I'd like to incorporate art, but i am certainly no artist. If you
know of anyone who would like to volunteer their services, please have
them contact me at email@example.com.
Here's the first time i've seen such a thing: Someone is offering
_money_ for a collective noun suggestion! There are three prizes to be
won for a collective noun for Ph.D. graduates. See
I've received several suggestion for a collective noun for linguistic
enthusiasts, which i've posted under the "mailing list" section in the
page's new format. Check them out, then vote for one or add your own.
[sent on 4/2/1996]
The page goes public (well, sorta). I received mail today requesting
permission for the Collective Noun Homepage to be published on a CD-ROM
being developed by a university professor. An excerpt:
> I am a faculty at the University of Illinois and am currently
> developing a CD-ROM that teaches Internet Usage, Search Strategies,
> etc. through a showcase of resources available on the Internet. I am
> very interested in utilizing a few sample pages from your website.
Incidentally, if you have a suggestion for a collective noun refering
to a group of linguistic enthusiasts, please send it to me. :)