This post is part of the A-to-Z Challenge.
An initialism is a word composed of the initial letter of more than one word and the letters are pronounced separately. This is different from an acronym that is pronounced as a word. Examples:
With the use of texting and sometimes a limit on the number of characters allowed in a message, initialism has taken off.
And just to be a bit pretentious, some initialisms suffer from RAS syndrome. That’s Redundant Acronym Syndrome syndrome where a word in the acronym or initialism is used again in the phrase. Examples:
- ATM machine – automatic teller machine machine
- PIN number – personal identification number number
I love RAS syndrome examples; they make me LOL laugh.