markley’s law, recorded for posterity

Well, I guess I figured out wiki functionality well enough to generate up a Wiktionary entry for Markley’s Law, mentioned yesterday. It probably will not be there long ([1119 Update] And has already been deleted. *sigh* How are you supposed to add new words to an online dictionary if they do not allow you to add new words? [/1119 Update]), so here are the preservations of it for future internet generations:


After Stephen Markley (born 1983), American writer. Originally articulated by Alan R. and named by Hank Archer


Markley’s law (singular only)

  1. (usually humorous) The adage that any Internet discussion regarding firearm owners will eventually mention male genitalia.


  • I recommend that this be called “Markley’s Law.” That has to be some kind of variant of Godwin’s law: As an online discussion of gun owners’ rights grows longer, the probability of an ad hominem attack involving penis size approaches 1. – Hank Archer

And lest anyone accuse me of sideline sniping, I have, indeed, informed Stephen Markley of his newfound internet notoriety, at his “[email protected]” email address:


I just wanted to inform you that your recent article at Chicago Now has been used by Mr. Hank Archer as the basis for the generation of Markley’s Law, as documented here. In short, “The adage that any Internet discussion regarding firearm owners will eventually mention male genitalia.”

Thank you for so clearly and floridly documenting your thoughts for all the world to see, and thank you for providing the seminal impulse for this new Internet law.


(Note: This email, and any response to it, will be posted to my weblog.)

As you can probably already figure, I will let you know if he has the nerve to respond… And, yes, my use of the word “seminal” was malicious – hey, since the guy has a fixation, I might as well cater to it…

[2200 Update] Looks like my submission to Urban Dictionary was approved. Look for this link to be live in the next few days. The Internet never forgets… Markley’s Law! [/2200 Update]

[1810 12JUN10 Update]The Urban Dictionary definition for “Markley’s Law” is now live. Stephen has not yet seen fit to comment… big surprise there. [/1810 12JUN10 Update]

10 thoughts on “markley’s law, recorded for posterity”

  1. You probably should have mentioned that it’s a variant of Godwin’s Law, with a ref to the Godwin’s Law entry.

    I think it will need to be in use for a while before they’ll accept it, so we’ll need to be sure to use it a lot…

  2. @John Hardin – I can probably arrange for using it a fair bit here… 🙂

    @Dixie – I have to admit, their turnaround was somewhat impressive. Or sad. Depends on how you look at it, I guess.

    @Standard Mischief – Already did :). Submitted the form, waiting to hear back from whatever editors run that particular webpage.

  3. Weird: it’s gone, but with nothing in the discussion or edit pages. Did you get an email inviting you to eff off for the entry?

  4. Not a peep. Just that note on the delete page indicating that the word does not have enough usage yet. I guess it is up to us to change that :).

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