You’ve Been Saying GIF Wrong Says Founder, It is “JIF”

/ 3 years ago


Steve Wilhite, the one who invented the GIF format back in the late 1990s, has come out to publicly tell people that the Graphics Interchange Format is actually pronounced “JIF” not “GIF” when using its abbreviation.

Sure anyone could of found out this had they of bothered to do some research but for some reason “GIF” seems to have taken off a bit more instead of “JIF” and who really cares enough to investigate it, right?

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

After 26 years of saying it wrong, the internet community needs to shape up its act. I am sure this revelation will have thousands of hardcore internet users needing to change there ways.

This isn’t the first term popularity has taken off over the true pronunciation. Take for instance the GNOME project. Most people pronounce it “nome” opting for a silent G, must like a garden gnome. However, it is actually pronounced “ge-nome” and the G is supposed to be pronounced.

Have you been saying GIF wrong all your life?

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  • Ben Curwen

    Well Graphics is pronounced Graphics, not Jrafics, so it makes sense that its pronounced Gif, not Jif.
    Whether the creator says it is or not, It will always be pronounced in the same way, “Gif”.

    You can’t just come out 20 years after you created something and change it. I say Gif, not Jif, and I am not wrong.

    • This is exactly what I was thinking while reading the article.

    • I agree. Nobody, and I mean nobody outside of them geek-know-it-alls pronounce the G as a J. In fact, I have never heard anyone first hand EVER say G(J)IF. Why would it be soft?! English dictates that it should be a hard G. As does the fact that the G, as mentioned, is taken from the word “Graphics”. I just don’t know….

  • Dave

    It’s just to raise his profile!

  • confoozed

    Does that make jpeg pronounced “gay-peg”? o.O I’m very confused how he arrived at that pronunciation.

  • omega3504

    if we used whatever name the creator gave us for a file format we would have names like .ass….oh wait.

  • d6bmg

    Who cares about how it is pronounced? Specially as long as it actually works.

    • d6bmg

      And the pronunciation style changes from country to country.