This post is dedicated to one of the most misused words in the English language – which makes it also one of my least favourite words, one that gets my back up and has the same effect to me as nails down a blackboard.
The definition of haul is quite clear. You either pull something along with force – hauling it behind you. Or you steal a large quantity of something – pirate treasure for example. Haul has never meant the aftermath of a shopping trip and the purchases you made.
So why is the world of social media now drowning in shopping hauls, baby hauls and sale hauls? Did all those people steal those products from the shops? Did you possess them illegally? No. They just went shopping.
The world of social media has turned into one where you can completely change the definition of a word and people follow like sheep. No longer can you just go to Tesco and do your weekly shop, no, you have to have a grocery haul. You can no longer go to the Next sale on Boxing Day and just go home with your bags of shopping. No, you have a Next sale haul.
Every day I log in to Bloglovin and scroll down my feed. Every day there is someone with a new haul – a new collection of products that they’ve purchased or maybe they’ve been sent them to review. They’re not a haul, they’re just things they’ve legitimately ended up with.
My issue isn’t that people share their shopping across their blogs and social media – although I will never find anything more boring than a video of someone unpacking their shopping. My issue is that we should have more respect for the English language.
Haul in this context sits right next to the people that use pacific instead of specific, stationary instead of stationery, are instead of our and the constant text message abbreviations in anything written.
The pacific is an ocean – specific is a precise detail. Stationary is not moving – stationery is pens and envelopes. Are is how something is, our is belonging to. And haul? Haul is something stolen – not a shopping trip.