Which one is correct? Docs or Doc?


An abbreviated word for 'documentary' would be doc. However, it could be also reffered as doctor as well. Should I use 'docs' instead? Is there any chances people might misunderstand or confuse it with doctors? or maybe even documents?


Posted 2019-09-22T04:25:54.513

Reputation: 3

Hello Yong2, welcome to ELL. The fact that you are using an abbreviation tells me that the communication is most likely informal. Depending on the context (i.e., I am assuming the person you are speaking to knows the issue/subject of the conversation), I doubt the person you are communicating with will confuse it with 'doctors'. But it could be misinterpreted for 'documents'. For example, consider this: Hi John, I am wondering if you had a chance to look at the "docs" yet. – AIQ – 2019-09-22T04:38:40.713

1if you shorten it, it's one doc or two docs. But if you're worried about confusion, why do you want to shorten it in the first place? – Jason Bassford – 2019-09-22T05:17:15.017

Hi @Yong2, welcome to ELL. It's better to use the full word and not the abbreviated one to prevent confusion. – Khushraj Rathod – 2019-09-22T05:39:18.237



If ambiguity is a concern then don't abbreviate at all. There isn't a standard abbreviation for "documentary" so say or write the word in full. This is unlike, for example, "romantic comedy" which does have a standard abbreviation "romcom".

I'm not really interested in romcoms so I switched to the Discovery channel and watched a documentary about Lions in Africa.

You might, in casual speak, and with people who understand the context use any abbreviation you like. If you and your friends often talk about TV you might say,

Hey, you catch the doc 'bout Lions last night?

At this point you are extending and developing the Language by creating new words which are understood initially by the context. In time, you and your friends might come to use "doc" as the abbrieviation for documentary. But as a learner you don't need to do this. You should normally stick to the full word.

James K

Posted 2019-09-22T04:25:54.513

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