PSA: Pixelated

PEOPLES! The word “pixilated” (also spelled “pixelated”) does not mean “showing lots of pixels” or have anything to do with an image.

It is a synonym for “drunk”. Okay?

I heard none other than Merlin Mann use it incorrectly today and I’m at wits end here.

pixelated = drunk = tipsy = three sheets to the wind = shiney = wasted

So, enough.

UPDATE: Yes, I’ve seen and no I do not think that makes it okay. I’m going to be a word curmudgeon here. It’s the OED or bust.


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4 Responses to “PSA: Pixelated”

  1. amy.leblanc Says:

    i think it’s messed up that the OED is only available to subscribers so that no one can argue with you.

    although i did check my shelf copy, and while, yes, your preferred definition is #1, the colloquial use you admonish here is #2.

    i bet i can find a fair number of old english words for which the #1 definition is no longer used and subsequent definitions are more popular, so i think you lose this argument. ;)

    * * *

    Hi Amy,

    Blargh. I think you’re right. Well, you’re right that the original definition of pixelated is probably gone and the new usage is here to stay. And you’re also right that I’m snotty about the OED, but not so no one can argue with me.

    Now get off my lawn!

    xx, Holden

  2. Jack Says:

    Well, I need to use this word with the new meaning for work and art. And I don’t think replacing it with a new word is the answer. There is a large group of people that only new the new meaning and don’t even know that the word existed pre digital age. But then again I’m a scientist so I’m use to making up new words.

    * * *


    Yeah, I pretty much lose this battle. Hrmph. I think I wanted to make the case because it’s such a beautiful word…and now I can’t use it in my poems because everyone will think I mean something I don’t. English is such an (literally) awesome language that changes and morphs and grows so quickly, it sometimes leaves me breathless.

    Well maybe I’ll write a poem about that then.

    But I did get ONE vote, haha, in the form of an email from a good friend (also a scientist, and who actually works in photography and imaging):

    He said:

    I just finished my talk on the Imaging Sensors Conference in San Diego and no one knew what pixelated meant other than a defect image where individual pixels are showing …

    They had little sense of humor when I suggested the alternative … Lol … But ill keep supporting the cause … Lol

    Scientists with little sense of humor? Get right out of town.

    Anyway, I’m throwing up the white flag on this one.

    xx – Your Girl

  3. Amedeus Photo Says:

    I’m getting out town right now … Lol

    Rudi A.

  4. johnny Says:

    I just wanted to let you know that I use the word pixilated all the time for describing my oft drunken exploits…

    Obligingly and mist pixilatedly yours,

    Johnny the tope…

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