6 Apr 2005
I came across today’s word, fisking, in a recent post over at Corante. At fist I thought fisking was a typo or a one-time-use, bit of jargon, but in fact fisking is neologism born from the blogosphere.
The eponymous verb describes a detailed point by point refutation of a argument or article. The technique is named after the British journalist Robert risk. In late 2001, while covering the war in Afghanistan, Fisk published an account of a mob beating him and his subsequent rescue from the angry mod. Blogger Andrew Sullivan, suspicious of the credibility of the report wrote a point-by-point refutation of Fisk’s account. Since then the blogosphere has used the term fisking to describe a detailed point-by-point refutation.
I don’t know enough of the story to comment on veracity of Fisk’s or Sullivan’s claims, but I do like the word. I see a lot of fisking on the Internet and I enjoy it. I hope fisking makes it into the wider vernacular.
By the way the Corante.com post is about Grokster’s Supreme Court case and includes links to a few fisks. If you are interested in IP law or the future of innovation in America the fisks are worth the time.