I just got off the phone with someone from Chicago City Hall. I had called to discuss Chicago’s new e-cig ordinance on vaping inside. When I told the guy I worked for a vaping company, it took him a second to process, so I then said “e-cigarette company.” This garnered the response “oh vaaaping, ha ha”. Ok, that’s fine. I understand “vaping” isn’t a word the general public is familiar with. Now I don’t fault the gentleman working for City Hall at all. It’s not his job to know all the terminology of every industry.
But this really got me thinking. I remember when I sat in on the first City Council hearing regarding e-cigs and the Clean Air Act. One of the witnesses supporting the ban kept using the word “vaping”, which is great, because that’s what it is. The only problem was that she pronounced it “vah-ping” like the ‘ah’ in ‘laugh’. This made all the vapers chuckle. While I would like to commend her on trying to use the right terminology, she ended up negating her credibility. She has obviously never been around vapers or heard the word pronounced correctly. And it wasn’t a one time mistake. She kept pronouncing it wrong throughout her testimony.
While e-cigarettes have become WAY more popular than before, there are still tons of people who aren’t in the know. We use the term “vaping” all over the office. Vapers active on social media also heavily use the term. But as long as we’ve all been using it and have become familiar with it, we need to remember that not everyone hears it on a daily basis.
I’m curious to know your experiences with the term. Do you use it regularly? Do you say ‘vape’ around your family, friends, co-workers? How about people who you are explaining ecigs too?