It occurs to me that I'd like to get this acronym (or rather, initialism) into wider use, so I should post about it.
"TSOR" (pronounced by spelling it out, not pronounced as if it were a word) stands for "Thirty Seconds Of Research"; it was coined by Josh S., and is in regular use on the mailing list where he coined it. He first used the full phrase in late 2002, and first used the initials in March of 2003.
It has a wide variety of uses. For example:
- If someone asks a question that they could've found the answer to easily on their own ("What's the capital of Ruritania?"), someone might respond snidely, "TSOR would have told you that it's Strelsau." But because we're pretty much all friends and many of us are show-offs who are happy to dive in and find answers for people, it's rarely actually used this way.
- If someone asks a question in passing but doesn't think to check Google, and someone else discovers that the answer is easy to find, the respondent might use a relatively non-snide variant like "TSOR says it's Strelsau."
- The person who posts the original question might use it to indicate that they did check Google before asking the mailing list: "Anyone happen to know what Grand Duke Michael's middle name was? TSOR didn't turn anything up."
- Someone who's an expert in the topic area but doesn't know the answer to the given question can use it as a sort of disclaimer: "TSOR suggests that Strelsau is sixty miles from the border, but that's all I know about it" indicates that you're not speaking from a depth of personal knowledge.
- An editor who's attempting to fact-check a story but knows nothing about the subject area in question, and is therefore relying on Google, Wikipedia, and Britannica, might say "TSOR suggests that Ruritania doesn't actually exist, but you probably know more about it than I do; if you're sure it's real, you can leave this alone."
Anyway. I don't know if it'll find widespread use on the web, but it definitely fits my head; I figure even if y'all don't start using it, you'll at least know what I mean when I say it now.