The opposite of postpone? [prepone?]

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hly2004

Banned
chinese
Hi, everyone:

Could you tell me the opposte word or phrase of "postpone"?
For example:

The meeting is postponed.

Best wishes.
 
  • hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Hello, Panjandrum:
    Sorry, I didn't make it clear ;-)

    For example: The meeting is expected to be held next month. the decision comes that the meeting will be held next week.

    Best wishes.
     

    o4a22000

    New Member
    English, United States
    It depends also on the english speaking county. In the United States brought forward and preponed are very unusual. Advanced is ok, but pushed forward to or pushed up to are better.
     

    TrentinaNE

    Senior Member
    USA
    English (American)
    As an AE speaker, I tend to use and hear "moved up" or "pulled forward" or simply "rescheduled."

    Elisabetta
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    I think the most idiomatic would be to say that something was "moved ahead" or "scheduled at an earlier time/date." In other words, I can't think of an antonym, except for maybe "advanced."
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Does anyone have an idea what is the opposite of postponed for a meeting (= put earlier in time... but in one word)? I'm pulling my hair off!
    Many thanks ;)

    Aha! According to dictionary.com, there seems to be a word called "prepone" :eek: :D (go check it out if you don't believe me :cool:)
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Ah, the amazing power of the WordReference dictionary :)
    Today's question has been added to the end of last December's thread on the same topic.

    The OED notes prepone as "most frequent in Indian English."
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    Interesting nichec, but I don't think I'm going to be using that word until it's far more popular, with all due respect to Mr. Webster. Nor would I recommend its use to others, unless they wish to sound pompous or pedantic. (I do sound pedantic often, but not when I can avoid it; I was aware of this word's existence, but I'm surprised it's made its way into a dictionary.)

    It seems to me that most of the "prepone" mentions in Google refer to an argument as to whether the word should be or is used.
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Shall we prepone the next repetition of this question, or accelerate its schedule?

    :D :thumbsup:

    As you wish, sir :D

    I wouldn't use it either, but it makes perfect sense to have a prepone when you have a postpone. (I wonder why this word is not popular......)
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    1987 Summary of World Broadcasts Pt. 3: Far East (B.B.C.) 14 Oct. FE/8698/B/1 The winter session of Indian parliament, which is normally convened in the third week of November, has been preponed..to early next month.
    1997
    Independent 26 July I. 15/3 On my recent visit to Delhi, I was handed a note by my client's driver who met me... The note stated that my meeting with my client had been preponed.
    2001
    Times of India (Nexis) 22 Feb., [The] transport minister..decided to ask schools to prepone their examinations and start summer vacations in April in view of a transport crisis.

    From the OED
     

    Shiggity

    Member
    English, USA
    "Prepone" is not even a word to people other than those in parts of the Indian subcontinent. If your audience is there, use it; if not, people will think you strange.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    "Prepone" is not even a word to people other than those in parts of the Indian subcontinent. ...
    The fact that you are unfamiliar with a word is no excuse for making such a sweeping generalisation
    If your audience is there, use it; if not, people will think you strange.
    However, I agree with the general intent of your conclusion :) There is little point in using prepone in a context where, although it would almost certainly be understood, its use would attract attention to itself rather than your message.
     

    Shiggity

    Member
    English, USA
    The fact that you are unfamiliar with a word is no excuse for making such a sweeping generalisation

    It seems unfair of you to assume that I made this statement just because I am "unfamiliar" with the word. Note that it isn't even listed on webster.com, even in the unabridged version, and my sentiment is supported by Wikipedia, and MSN Encarta's dictionary mentions its origins in "South Asia," beginning in the "Late 20th Century."

    I have boatloads of evidence; the fact that you make premature assumptions is no excuse for critiquing others for making statements.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    From the examples listed in the OED, prepone with this meaning appeared first in British English in the mid-twentieth century. It is now most often used in Indian English. Its meaning is immediately obvious in context.

    In this thread, we have Dr Appalaya, from India, suggesting preponed naturally; we have o4a22000, from Ohio, categorising it with brought forward as "very unusual", not unknown; and we have usage examples from the BBC and The Independent. In that context, to suggest that prepone is "not even a word to people other than those in parts of the Indian subcontinent" seems a bit extreme.

    It would be unreasonable of me to ask Shiggity to prove a negative, so I won't. I was responding, perhaps unkindly, to the statement that "prepone is not even a word".
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    Webster's New Millennium Dict., formerly known as the Random House Unabridged (AE), does not consider the word unknown, rare, slang, or anything but normal:

    Webster's New Millennium™ Dictionary of English - Main Entry: preponePart of Speech: vDefinition: to place in front of, to schedule for an earlier time; cf. postpone
    For the curious, here are lots of comments for, and a fair number against, the use of prepone.

    Look here.


    More grist for the mill—

    1) about 94,000 Google listings.

    2) yourDictionary.com:
    Word Of the Day

    Today's Word:
    Prepone (verb)
    goldband.gif

    Pronunciation: [pree-'pon ]
    Definition: To advance a date or appointment.
    Usage: Usage of this term seems to be rising in the medical profession, especially in Canada, and it has been in wide usage in India for 50 years.
    3) Merriam-Webster Online has an entry for it in its Open Dictionary section. This is not the main dictionary, but a place where people suggest words and definitions, such as bling, for inclusion in the primary works.

    4) "Prepone is found in The New Oxford Dictionary of English, 1998. It is
    >listed as being
    >Indian (from India) and is defined as: to bring forward to an earlier date
    >or time.
    >Example given: The publication date has been preponed from July to June.
    >" source


    From all of the above, I take this word to be relatively new to AE and CanE, much like the plethora of computing jargon that finds its way into standard usage these days.
     

    Shiggity

    Member
    English, USA
    As far as the validity of "prepone" itself, it's a back-formation of "postpone," with the appended "pre-" ("pone" is itself not a word). Generally, if you know a word starting with "post," you can't drop the "post" and stick "pre" on there unless you can drop the "post" and use it by itself. "Post" is not a separable prefix from "pone," and in my opinion, "prepone" shouldn't be used anywhere since it's not logical.

    Where my statement may have been a little severe, it is true that if you used that word other than in India, you'll sound illiterate more often than not. Saying something "isn't a word" is subjective, but in my opinion, "prepone" being absent from any reputable, recent dictionary (like webster.com) means that not enough people have taken the neologistic plunge to merit its undisputed incorporation.
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    As far as the validity of "prepone" itself, it's a back-formation of "postpone," with the appended "pre-" ("pone" is itself not a word). Generally, if you know a word starting with "post," you can't drop the "post" and stick "pre" on there unless you can drop the "post" and use it by itself. "Post" is not a separable prefix from "pone," and in my opinion, "prepone" shouldn't be used anywhere since it's not logical.

    Where my statement may have been a little severe, it is true that if you used that word other than in India, you'll sound illiterate more often than not. Saying something "isn't a word" is subjective, but in my opinion, "prepone" being absent from any reputable, recent dictionary (like webster.com) means that not enough people have taken the neologistic plunge to merit its undisputed incorporation.

    The etymology of postpone, from M-W:

    Latin postponere to place after, postpone, from post- + ponere to place
    While there is no word "pone" in the English language, this does not mean that "-pone" is meaningless, valueless, or otherwise unusable in another idiom, new or old. And, as I posted earlier, Webster's does feature the word "propone." Look at dictionary.com, as nichec suggested.
     

    The Slippery Slide

    Senior Member
    British English
    'Brought forward' is the only suggested option that sounds remotely plausible to my ears.

    Surely 'prepone', if it is/were a word, would mean rescheduling an event for the past? As in "Tomorrow's game has been preponed until last week. It will take place last Saturday."

    Haha, please don't counter that suggestion seriously. I'm just having fun surfing on the inconsistent logic of the English tongue . . .
     

    Shiggity

    Member
    English, USA
    The etymology of postpone, from M-W:
    Latin postponere to place after, postpone, from post- + ponere to place
    While there is no word "pone" in the English language, this does not mean that "-pone" is meaningless, valueless, or otherwise unusable in another idiom, new or old. And, as I posted earlier, Webster's does feature the word "propone." Look at dictionary.com, as nichec suggested.

    Yes thanks, that etymology is pretty obvious just by looking at the word, but I knew someone would bring that up. "Propone" has similar origins - from "ponere," but is a different word, not an antonym of postpone. Nor did I say that "-pone" was meaningless, valueless, or otherwise unusable, but that the fact that "pone" isn't a word suggests that "prepone" is a neologism stemming from a back-formation of "postpone," which it is. And while people are able to use "prepone," that doesn't mean they should. (Even now they have admitted "nucular" into some dictionaries.)
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Where my statement may have been a little severe, it is true that if you used that word other than in India, you'll sound illiterate more often than not.

    If a listener assumes the speaker is illiterate simply because the speaker uses an umfamiliar word, that says more about the listener than the speaker.

    "Prepone" seems a little awkward to me, but understandable, and far more logical than "prequel", which is now in common use. :) This is the first time I've heard it, however. If I used it at work to describe what I had done to a meeting time, I'm sure I'd have to explain myself.
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    I think we've reached a consensus, however:
    1) The word is in some dictionaries and, regardless of its provenance, we can state that it does exist.
    2) It does not sound idiomatic except perhaps in India. Therefore, it's probably preferable if you use one of the alternatives suggested above; else, as JamesM, you may have to explain yourself. Or you may end up sounding awkward or pedantic.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    ... and MSN Encarta's dictionary mentions its origins in "South Asia," beginning in the "Late 20th Century."

    Where my statement may have been a little severe, it is true that if you used that word other than in India, you'll sound illiterate more often than not. Saying something "isn't a word" is subjective, but in my opinion, "prepone" being absent from any reputable, recent dictionary (like webster.com) means that not enough people have taken the neologistic plunge to merit its undisputed incorporation.

    I might share your low opinion of the MSN dictionary (which you cite to support a position you hold!), but, as stated in earlier posts, the word is in the OED and the latest, very recent, edition of the Random House Unabridged. If you wish to suggest that these works, among the dictionaries that list the word (others have been cited in this thread) are less than reputable, then we have a serious difference of opinion about what is a reputable dictionary.

    Do you wish to suggest that Oxford's multi-volume work is not reputable? Is there a better BE lexicographical source in the world?

    Can you give the names of AE dictionaries you find more reputable than the Random House Unabridged?

    Crikey, Danger Mouse!
     

    ladybugEnglishFan

    Senior Member
    Polish
    So is it ok to say "The meeting was rescheduled to (do we use the preposition "to"?) Friday from Saturday." ?And can I say "The meeting was advanced from Saturday to (?) Friday?
     

    TrentinaNE

    Senior Member
    USA
    English (American)
    So is it ok to say "The meeting was rescheduled to (do we use the preposition "to"?) Friday from Saturday." ?

    Yes, but it is more common to hear "from Saturday to Friday".

    And can I say "The meeting was advanced from Saturday to (?) Friday?

    Not sure I've heard it stated that way, but I've heard "pulled forward from... to..."
     

    insouciantguru

    Member
    India- English & Hindi
    Hi guys. My first post on this forum. :)

    There is a genuine void in the language- at least in the dominant BE, AE and Aus E branches- of a precise antonym to ‘postpone’. It is noteworthy that the ‘pone’ part of the word ‘postpone’ has its provenance in the latin word ‘ponere’ which means:’to put’ or ‘to place’. Thus "prepone" as the logical opposite of postpone, as its antonym so to speak, makes perfect sense. It drives home the meaning unequivocally.

    “Prepone” has already entered the Oxford dictionary. It is used daily and widely in the Indian subcontinent. It has also spread to Singapore and other Asian countries through Business English. Hopefully, it’s only a matter of time before the word catches on in the rest of the Anglosphere. :p

    Example: The English Literature examination date has been preponed from April 2nd to March 30th.
     

    Codinome Shlomo

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Brazil)
    So, if someone says:
    - I really hope to see you next meeting, on Fourth of July.

    And you answer:
    - Didn't they tell you? It was moved up!

    Will it be understood it as "preponed" ?
    Will it be understood as if the date of the meeting was changed ?
     
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    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    I think that, if you read the whole thread, the answer is that most people who speak BE or AE will not understand you, but many people speaking English in India or south-eastern Asia will.
     

    insouciantguru

    Member
    India- English & Hindi
    I think that, if you read the whole thread, the answer is that most people who speak BE or AE will not understand you, but many people speaking English in India or south-eastern Asia will.

    Why will they not understand the word (for it is self-explanatory)? If they don't "like" the sound of it that's hardly a valid criticism, in my opinion.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Why will they not understand the word (for it is self-explanatory)? If they don't "like" the sound of it that's hardly a valid criticism, in my opinion.
    I haven't suggested that I don't like the sound of it, even if others have. My comment is not a criticism, it's a statement of what I believe to be fact. Very few people will think about the etymology of postpone if they hear somebody say prepone. They will just recognise it as a word they have not come across previously and they will not understand it.

    As it happens I don't think it serves any useful purpose as we already have well-established ways of saying that something has been brought forward, but if speakers of other forms of English (such as Indian English) want to use it then I could not possibly have any objection to their doing so. Languages evolve, and English has certainly evolved into several distinctly different threads with differing grammar and vocabularies.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Excuse me, but I was talking about the expression "to move up", and I used "prepone" as an example.
    Please do not edit your post after it has been answered. Anybody seeing this part of the thread will be completely mystified by the responses to your question.

    Note: Original version of post 40 has now been reinstated -- Copyright
     
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    icecreamsoldier

    Senior Member
    New Zealand English
    <<Quote of deleted post removed -- but the answer below is still relevant to the discussion>>

    I remember hearing "prepone" for the first time and having a chuckle to myself, as I thought it was a clever but mistaken backformation made by a language learner. The intended meaning, however, was immediately apparent, especially as it is never used in the absence of context. Since then I have become accustomed to hearing it, keeping in mind that I have close associations with the Indian community. I wouldn't use it myself, simply because I prefer "bring forward", but I understand and accept "prepone" as used by others.

    As to whether it can be used without a date, I think this is highly inadvisable. A meeting or event can be postponed indefinitely, as the parties involved will simply await further notification. When bringing the date forward, or "preponing" it, the parties involved need to know the new date or time right away, or else they will worry that they have already missed it. I think therefore that no matter what expression is used, a date or time must be stated.
     
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    insouciantguru

    Member
    India- English & Hindi
    <<Quote of deleted post removed -- but the answer below is still relevant to the discussion>>

    As to whether it can be used without a date, I think this is highly inadvisable. A meeting or event can be postponed indefinitely, as the parties involved will simply await further notification..

    The same principle works for preponing an event until further details are provided or made available. I don't see why this is any more inadvisable than postponing an event without stating a definite date. It would be clear from both sentences that the information provided at that point is tentative and that it would be made concrete shortly thereafter.

    For example: Say an event is supposed to be held every year on December 15th. If one receives a note in March informing them that "the event has been preponed", it is implied that the information is at this point incomplete and a definite date will be provided subsequently, just as it would in the case of a meeting that is postponed indefinitely. In both cases the parties are made to await further clarification.
     
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    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    If someone tells me an event has been postponed and doesn't provide a date, I immediately forget about it, figuring they will get back to me with a date sometime.

    If someone tells me an event has been moved up, I expect a date -- and it would strike me as odd that they wouldn't know the new date and share it. Why this is, I couldn't say. Although if a date weren't known, I would expect it to be announced in some fashion: "We will be moving the date of the cat show forward, and will let you know when it is finalized" (or something to that effect).

    I think postponing contains a sense that it may never happen; whereas, moving a date forward doesn't have that possibility within it -- it definitely means it will be happening.
     

    insouciantguru

    Member
    India- English & Hindi
    .

    I think postponing contains a sense that it may never happen; whereas, moving a date forward doesn't have that possibility within it -- it definitely means it will be happening.

    I don't quite agree. Postponed to me means it will happen but at a later date. If the intent is to convey that it may never happen I would like to be told it has been postponed indefinitely.

    As I stated in my example above, not stating a date lends ambiguity in both scenarios. It is no less ambiguous in the case of postpone than it is with prepone. I think it's more a case of getting used to the word.
     
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