Saturday, December 09, 2006

Melbourne Vs Melbourne

Recently throughout national media and even to a certain extent local media, the term ‘Melburnite’ has been used to describe people who live in Melbourne. Since when did this change occur? Ever since I can remember, people from this fair city have been referred to as Melburnians.

However, this new “Melburnite” term has crept in and not only is it wrong, it is completely annoying. Those from Sydney are Sydney-siders, Darwinians from Darwin, New Yorkers from New York, Romans from Rome – I could go on. So when did we start to lose our identity by a select few who don’t properly know how to address us. Surely the media should know better especially Melbourne media!

Of course I don’t expect everyone to know the collective noun for a city’s population if they don’t live there, but the media has no excuses. Online encyclopædia, Wikipedia states: A person from Melbourne is referred to as a Melburnian. Even Word picks up Melburnite as incorrect.

Melburnians are proud people and we have even gone to the extent of building a luxury apartment block in the heart of the city called The Melburnian. Located on St Kilda Road near The Victoria Barracks, these apartments are marketed as the epitome of Melbourne living.

Something tells me that if a journalist doesn’t know the collective noun for townsfolk, they’ll just ‘ite’ it – Brisbanite, Darwinite, Perthite, Hobartite, Termite…

It’s a just sign of laziness on the media behalf. Sure, if it’s a genuine use then there’s no issue, but if there is a proper word to describe townsfolk then use it!!

Rant over.

Melbourne from St Patrick's Catherdral - a true Melburnian

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, Mr Rant-Over, I was born in Melbourne in 1945 and between then and when I moved away in 1954 (first to Sydney and then to London), we always called ourselves Melbournites or Melburnites. So it's hardly a 'new' term.