Featured, Language, Technology

Use of “as per” Exploding in Silicon Valley?

So, I occasionally get anxious when I perceive some trend in word usage, especially when it seems like hyper-correction. I swear that in the past few years everyone replaced “social” with “societal” and in the past few months I swear that everyone (that I correspond with) has started saying “as per” instead of . . . say, “per” . . . for example:

“I did the job per your instructions.”


“I did the job, as you instructed.”

Has lately become:

“I did the job, as per your instructions.”

I just saw a work e-mail where someone used “as per” in two consecutive sentences and I said “there has to be a way to track this.”

And there is a way. A very crude way: Google Trends.

I wasn’t able to find anything at first: “as per” is dwarfed by “as” and “per” but I confined my search to the past 12 months, then the United States . . . then . . . California:

1. San Jose, CA, USA
2. Sacramento, CA, USA
3. San Francisco, CA, USA
4. Pleasanton, CA, USA
5. San Diego, CA, USA
6. Irvine, CA, USA
7. Los Angeles, CA, USA
8. Milpitas, CA, USA

It is probably just a statistical blip for an incomplete corpus but at least for the moment I feel a little better to see some data demonstrating a measured spike in usage of “as per” in the Silicon Valley . . . I might not be as crazy as I suspect.

Is “as per” bad usage? It certainly annoys me. Some technical writers are grappling with the issue, and it sounds as if English craftspeople prefer to avoid using this weirdly redundant mish-mash of Germanic-Latin.

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Categories: Featured, Language, Technology

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