LINGUISTICS & CULTURE
|Data:||18/ABR/2008 11:50 PM|
|Assunto:||prank v. crank v. hoax call|
I'm not familiar with hoax call, but I would understand it to mean a call that cruelly gave me false information. If someone called and said my son had been kidnapped, I would hope with all my heart it was a hoax call. In other words, (1) the call is cruel and (2) I would hope that the information was false.
A crank call is a call from someone who may be mentally or emotionally unstable. If you receive an anonymous call from someone who says they will burn your house down if they hear your dog bark again, it would be a crank call from a crank. The caller is obsessed with something (noise, threats of violence violence, etc.). Or if you get a call from a neighbor insisting that you vote this way or that in the next election. I would call that a crank call. The caller is obsessed with something, and you are suffering because of it.
A prank call is a prank, a practical joke, etc. It is not mean, cruel, etc. A coworker received a prank call years ago. The caller said that Tom had been selected as employee of the month. The prankster asked him to report to the office of the director in another city for photos and an interview. He went there, but the director's secretary had no idea what he was talking about. Eventually, he realized that he had been the victim of a prank. I don't think it was a cruel joke. There were no threats, nothing mean was said, etc. But it was a joke. And a good one!
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