Tag Archives: category-mixedupmeanings

  1. “Hero” vs. “Protagonist”: What Is The Difference?

    Many stories have one thing in common: a brave main character who ends up saving the day. But does slaying the dragon or defusing the bomb make this person a hero or a protagonist? And can the two words be used interchangeably? The correct answer to both is yes, with the caveat that the words are not always synonymous. Both nouns have multiple definitions and …

  2. “Ludicrous” vs. “Ridiculous”: How To Use Each Word

    Ludicrous means something is silly enough to cause amusement. Ridiculous means it’s absurd enough to invite mockery or derision. Ludicrous has a more playful and amusing sense than ridiculous. You probably already knew these two words can be used to describe something that’s nonsensical or silly. But does that mean these two words are synonyms? What does ridiculous mean? We use ridiculous when something is …

  3. Systematic vs. Systemic: There’s A System To The Difference

    The George Floyd protests have brought attention to the word systemic—among many other powerful words that speak to this historic time—like never before. Many activists and public officials are calling to dismantle the systemic racism in policing and other social institutions that are disproportionately killing and oppressing Black people. These calls, and our broader cultural conversation around them, have compelled significant interest in—and considerable confusion …

  4. Marshal vs. Martial: Do You Know The Difference?

    It’s not enough that martial and marshal are pronounced the same, is it? No, the English language has to further complicate things, because while these homophones, martial and marshal, have different meanings, they both involve some overlapping concepts of law and war. And adding to the understandable confusion of these words is marshall, with two Ls. Let’s marshal, shall we say, the facts, and bring …

  5. “Pragmatic” vs. “Dogmatic”: What Are The Differences?

    Some people have the incredible ability to set their emotions aside and make clear, calm decisions in a crisis. Instead of getting caught up in big-picture ideals or feeling overwhelmed by the scale of a situation, they manage to face the problem head on and address it practically one step at a time. For those who don’t crumble under pressure, does this practical nature make …

  6. elderly woman making silly face

    “Psychopath” vs. “Sociopath”

    Think of your classic con artist: they lie, they’re manipulative, they don’t care about anyone else, and they lack remorse. Are these criminals psychopaths? Sociopaths? Both? People tend to think that a sociopath is a psychopath who doesn’t go around doing criminal things. Likewise, psycho remains shorthand for all kinds of deviant antisocial behavior, from stalking to murder. We’ve got some news for you. Despite …

  7. The Deep Web vs. The Dark Web: Do You Know The Difference?

    Have you ever wandered the recesses of the deep web and dark web? Or have you simply wondered what these expressions mean? These two terms are just as mysterious as they sound, but they’re not synonyms, despite how similar they may seem at first glance. There’s a lot of confusion out there about how to distinguish between these two terms, which both define hidden aspects of the Internet. …

  8. “Macaroon” vs. “Macaron”: What’s The Difference Between These Sweet Treats?

    If you’re a dessert lover, there’s a good chance that you enjoy both a rich coconut cluster cookie as well as a delicate almond cookie with a buttercream center. But which of these treats is a macaroon and which is a macaron? And did you know they were two different, albeit delicious, things? Although most foodies know the difference between these beloved cookies, many people …

  9. “Goth” vs. “Emo”: What’s The Difference?

    It’s finally time to settle one of the most annoying mixed-up meanings in modern times … at least for goths (and the emo crowd). You’ve almost certainly heard of both goth and emo, but do you know that each of these are actually rather distinct terms, especially for fans of either music genre and lifestyle? Below, we’ll break down the meaning and differences of both …

  10. “Misinformation” vs. “Disinformation”: Get Informed On The Difference

    Amid the coronavirus pandemic, we are all desperate for information. Where did the virus come from? Is there a cure? How can we keep staying safe? Will life get back to normal? In the case of COVID-19, information can be a literal life-saver—when it’s true. Wrong information doesn’t help anyone and can even make things worse. And like a virus, wrong information can spread, causing …