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GIF Creator Steve Wilhete Reminds Everyone How To Pronounce His Invention


At last night’s 17th Annual Webby Awards, GIF creator Steve Wilhite was honored for creating one of the most widely-used file types on the internet. Before his speech, Steve took some time to talk to The New York Times about his invention. And like we’ve been trying to tell you, Steve explained to the NYT tech blog that the correct pronunciation of the word “GIF” is “Jiff.”

From said NYT Tech blog:

In the last decade, the animated GIF has reigned supreme, and while Mr. Wilhite has never himself made an animated GIF, he said the classic, “dancing baby” from 1996 remains a favorite. [Ed. Note: Very good choice.]

He is proud of the GIF, but remains annoyed that there is still any debate over the pronunciation of the format.

“The Oxford English Dictionary accepts both pronunciations,” Mr. Wilhite said. “They are wrong. It is a soft ‘G,’ pronounced ‘jif.’ End of story.”

At what point are people going to start listening to Steve?

When am I going to start listening to Steve?

Everyone in our office knows it’s “Jiff” (we posted on similar news awhile ago) but for some reason it’s just easier to call it “GIF.” As in, “I don’t “GIF” a f*ck about what Steve says, I’m calling it what I want.”

I think it’s safe to say that it’s too late to change now. Sorry Steve.

Director of Sales and Marketing
Wyatt is a Gettysburg College graduate and NYC native who is flattered that you're interested about reading up on him.