BuzzFeed News

Reporting To You

Folks Are Dragging Gothamist For Wrongly Using The Term "Deadass"

Damn, guess Gothamist took the L this morning. Ayeeee.

Posted on January 19, 2017, at 12:59 p.m. ET

On Thursday morning, popular New York blog Gothamist wrote about the complaints of commuters on the constantly-disappointing and delayed L train. They first published with the headline, "The L Train Is Particularly Deadass This Morning" before changing it.

People took screenshots of the tweet, with the original headline, from Gothamist's Twitter account before it was deleted.
Twitter: @chelawhita

People took screenshots of the tweet, with the original headline, from Gothamist's Twitter account before it was deleted.

People were confused by how the term "deadass" was being used in this context. (It appeared to have been interpreted literally, and meant to convey the L train was "dead" "ass" slow this morning.)

@Gothamist don't understand your usage of "deadass" here

When you realize that's not what "deadass" means https://t.co/N60V5VAtLv

One commenter quickly responded to the headline to help the publication understand where they went wrong.

But of course, people online both laughed and collectively shook their heads at the failed attempt.

The @Gothamist discovered the term deadass and couldn't wait to butcher it... πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Ahahhaha @Gothamist tried it. Deadass

you deleted it, i kept it. @Gothamist this happened and we're going to deal with this.

"Particularly deadass" became its own trending phrase on Twitter β€” followed by many, many, crying-laughing emojis.

"...particularly deadass..." πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ https://t.co/KFHfD0rq9y

"The L train is particularly deadass this morning" πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Particularly deadass 😭😭😭😭😭😭

"Particularly deadass" πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ https://t.co/x6nWdZ21if

Folks even tried to adopt this new term.

I am particularly deadass this fine morning

Nah now I'm gonna start saying shit is "particularly deadass" lmaooo

But a lot of people felt it wasn't just a slip-up, but represented a careless and all-too-familiar trend of borrowing slang terms β€” often originating from and popularized by the black community β€” without understanding their meaning or roots.

When using black terminology goes wrong......

The gentrification of 'deadass' https://t.co/Z3bjQoxSgz

Hey @Gothamist, if you want to properly use our slang, get Social Media Managers that look like us. Deadass.

Which is all made more cringeworthy because "deadass" has become a localized term for New Yorkers.

Gothamist really used "deadass" wrong in a headline... deadass u need to hire some ppl from New York since ur calle… https://t.co/fq8IgNvUcN

I'm annoyed especially with the first one. How you in New York & cant use deadass correctly? https://t.co/I8VUv1uT85

The headline, and tweet, has now been updated to read, "The L Train Had No Interest In Your Silly 'Plans' This Morning."

The L Train Had No Interest In Your Silly 'Plans' This Morning https://t.co/buRMxmqcJQ

In a statement to BuzzFeed News, the author of the article and Gothamist's editor-in-chief, John Del Signore, said he misunderstood the meaning of "deadass" and appreciates Twitter users setting him straight.

"The headline was in reference to a tweet used in the L train story. For context, this is probably the millionth subway delay blog post we've done, and in my hasty effort to find new ways of saying the same thing in a headline, I blundered, and I apologize," he said. "My understanding was 'deadass' was slang for something 'seriously over,' but it appears I messed up."

"I also didn't realize there was a racial connotation here, and I do appreciate Twitter users who let me know my mistake," he added.

ADVERTISEMENT