Word of the day: indentikit

Spotted in yesterday's The Guardian Guide:

How did a clutch of arty female electro acts end up being tipped as the future of pop? Blame Scouting For Girls, the Pigeon Detectives and the slow death of indentikit guitar music


'Indentikit': it's an adjective, and presumably a portmanteau of 'identikit' and 'indie' (an abbreviation of 'independent music') . Synonyms used in the article include 'landfill indie' and 'pseudo indie'.

I like 'indentikit' because 'identikit' is itself a portmanteau, of 'identity' and 'kit'. The OED Online's first mention of 'identikit' is from the Observer in 1961:

About forty police forces in this country are now testing an American device called an ‘Identi-Kit’, which is used to translate witnesses' descriptions of a person into visual terms.


So originally a brand name?

But back to the more recent 'indentikit'. Interestingly, it appears in the standfirst of the article but not the body copy - was it the sub's choice of word rather than the writer's?

Googling 'indentikit' throws up more than 5,000 results, but most of them seem to be accidental misspellings of 'identikit'. Googling '+indentikit +indie' gives 345 results, most of which predate the article in The Guardian Guide.

So this is a word that is new to me, but not newly coined.

1 comment:

Gareth said...

I would have assumed it was just a spelling mistake.