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Is it fracing or fracking?

October 13, 2014

Keep Clam and Fac On“Is it fracing or fracking?” a question that that pokes its head up every so often. A subject generally dismissed on grounds of minor importance and consequence. That was until a reader of my article “A Fracking Tale” commented it was another blatant anti-fracking article.

The commenter explained, to the extent that the article used the word “fracking” rather than “fracing,” the lines were clearly drawn which side of the aisle it was speaking from. Rather surprising, since the discussion was rather pro fracking or facing. The reader noted that the “k” in fracking is a part of obscene and vulgar four-letter word beginning with “f” expressing anger, annoyance, and contempt.

Finally having some free time, a Google search “on “fracking or fracing” was in order.

Surprisingly, ranked number 2 was a short but authoritative statement from Steptoe & Johnson PLLC, a U.S. law firm with core strengths in energy, labor and employment, litigation, and transactional law, titled “Is it fracing or fracking?”

Steptoe & Johnson states “Is it fracing or fracking?” is a common question asked around the firm. In Steptoe & Johnson alerts and other publications, we use the term “fracing.” Why? Well, let’s take a moment to explain.”

“The industry (and our clients) refers to “hydraulic fracturing” as “fracing.” This has been the preferred industry spelling of the word for many years, which is why we have adopted the term as well. It aligns us with our clients and one of the key industries we serve.”

“The term “fracking” has been adopted by the anti-fracing movement – because of its similarity to another, ahem, colorful word that begins with an “F.”

When you think about it, hydraulic fracturing is rarely spelt hydraulic frackturing!

In closing: well there you have it, in the future; all favorable pieces on hydrofracturing will use fac, et al. (“cc” also allowed – fracced and fracced) and all negative discussion on hydrofracturing will use fack, etc. You are never too old to learn and it pays to listen what commentators have to say, sometimes.


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