Dog chasing its tail.You’re aware of the divide. Some people pronounce the acronym “GIF” with a soft G, as in “gerbil” or “gelatinous,” and others pronounce it with a hard G, as in “glabrous” or “grope.” Both sides seem intractable on the issue. And it’s jarring when you’re used to saying and hearing it one way, and then you’re slapped in the face with it the other.

BTW, it’s an acronym for Graphics Interchange Format. You’ve seen animated GIFs, they’re everywhere on the internet. The circular dog is an example.

Person wondering how to pronounce GIF.What a badass tellin’ the Oxford English Dictionary it’s wrong!

Steve Wilhite, who invented the Gif file in 1987 is on record as saying: “The Oxford English Dictionary accepts both pronunciations. They are wrong. It is a soft ‘G,’ pronounced ‘jif.’ End of story.” What a badass tellin’ the Oxford English Dictionary it’s wrong!

The letter “G” is a funny looking letter of dubious veracity, anyway. You got the soft G, the hard G, but there’s a third way to pronounce “G” in a word. In a lot of words, it’s silent. And while that may seem kind of shady to you, it’s not wrong.

It should come out verbally as IF.

Bureaucracy Inaction.The “G” is silent in words like “sight,” and “gnome.” Lotta times it’s paired with an “N” or an “H,” but that’s fairly well irrelevant. It’s SILENT so what the fuck difference does it make it doesn’t want to socialize with its neighbors?
So our consensus here in Orbit is GIF should be pronounced with the silent “G.” It should come out verbally as IF. “Oh, I see you’re using an animated IF.”

Though you’d still spell it GIF.

It’s part of our mission up here in Orbit to straighten this kinda shit out for you.

You’re welcome.

M. Nick

Notes and Acknowledgments:

We got the graphic of the gal with her hand to her mouth from an article on WikiHow about how to pronounce “G” in Dutch or something. We may have altered the image slightly for the purpose of commenting on it and likewise, the pronunciation of the letter “G.” We hid the model’s identity for privacy sake.