Jif and GIPHY are teaming up to settle the debate once and for all: how do you pronounce “GIF”? The collaboration includes a limited-edition 40-ounce jar of peanut butter with a double-sided label — one side says “GIF” in place of the classic Jif logo.
The label also comes with a pronunciation guide that will make some people angry. It reads: “Jif®, said with a “soft G,” is America’s number one peanut butter. GIFs, said with a “hard G,” are the frequently shared looping videos that add humor, culture, and entertainment into people’s daily conversations (of which GIPHY serves 10 billion each day).”
Plus the lid reads: “If you’ve ever called a GIF a “Jif,” we forgive you.”
Isn’t it pronounced with a soft G? — This collaboration is cute and will probably bring good business for both GIPHY and Jif. But one of the pioneers of the GIF format, Steve Wilhite, always pronounced it with a soft G. In fact, he and his fellow programmers used to joke around by riffing on Jif’s slogans — “choosy programmers choose GIF,” for example.
What is this alternate history being posited by Jif and GIPHY? Are these companies attempting to overrule the format’s creator by re-writing the narrative? The campaign’s micro-site even has an audio-based pronunciation guide with a hard G.
This campaign is a match made in heaven — And it’s surprising it’s taken this long to come to fruition. The limited-edition peanut butter jar is available on Amazon for $10. If you don’t feel like spending money, you can also join in by posting one of GIPHY’s surreal campaign GIFs or posting your own take using #JIFvsGIF.