Culture

Inventor Of The GIF Blows Minds At The Webbys: “It’s Pronounced ‘Jif'”

The GIF was invented by Steve Wilhite in June 1987. The question of how to pronounce it has been raging since then.

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This is Steve Wilhite, and you owe him your life.

stevew

Steve is the founder of the Graphics Interchange Format. He is the Godfather of the GIF. He is responsible for this.

The GIF was invented in June 1987. The question of how to pronounce it has been raging since then.

The GIF just earned Wilhite the Special Achievement Award at the Webby Awards, which are being held in New York as I type. Instead of giving a vocal acceptance speech (the Webbys enforce a strict five-word rule), he flashed a GIF, intending to end the long-heated debate once and for all.

This photo of that GIF came via Time Out New York, who tweeted it out from the ceremony just an hour ago.

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He spoke to The New York Times ahead of the ceremony. “The Oxford English Dictionary accepts both pronunciations. They are wrong. It is a soft ‘G,’ pronounced ‘jif.’ End of story.”

Gizmodo still think it’s a hard G, though.