I know that the word git is used for describing an unpleasant person. Also Git is a name of a version control system which is quite popular among software developers.

I thought this word did not form verbs. But recently I found a use git as verb in a phrase which was written by a native speaker from US, on the Heroku blog. In "10 Habits of a Happy Node Hacker (2016)," #9 is

9. Only git the important bits
Most apps are composed of both necessary files and generated files. When using a source control system like git, you should avoid tracking anything that's generated.

For example, your node app probably has a node_modules directory for dependencies, which you should keep out of git. As long as each dependency is listed in package.json, anyone can create a working local copy of your app - including node_modules - by running npm install.

Is it correct to use to git in meaning "to use the computer program Git" like to google means "to search something in Google"?

Or maybe it's wordplay based on the homophony of git and get?

  • You have to ask the person I think. Can you please fix some typos in your question?
    – user140086
    Feb 23, 2016 at 16:10
  • @choster Thank you! I found the phrase as a caption of a paragraph in computer article: blog.heroku.com/archives/2015/11/10/… Feb 23, 2016 at 16:23
  • 1
    In deep southern and Appalachian mountain American dialects, "git" is the pronunciation of "get".
    – Joe L.
    Feb 23, 2016 at 16:28
  • 1
    @pinocchio964 Thanks; I have edited your post to include the context, and in my opinion the question is now answerable.
    – choster
    Feb 23, 2016 at 16:30
  • [necromancer's comment] Consider the sentence: "Captains man ships in the harbour". One of the beauties of English (which often puzzles non-natives) is the freedom it gives in using a noun where a verb is normally used. Which does not mean, of course, that you can do this with any noun in any sentence, you need to think and ask yourself - will other people understand?
    – tum_
    Jun 23, 2016 at 8:44

2 Answers 2


It's quite common to use the name of a computer program as a verb, but it would be considered "jargon" which is specialized, work-related slang and terminology only used and understood by a niche subset of people with a common job (or hobby). Like most slang, it isn't typically used in formal communication (although there can be exceptions).

The pattern of "verbing" the name of a computer program is especially common for Linux/Unix-based programs such as git (probably because they are typically functional; they perform a specific action).

This usage would be understood by most programmers, at least those who work with git, and baffle most people outside of the field.


The correct answer depends on the crowd you call company at the time you decide to verb GIT. If your audience is all computer science types, GIT'n it may not be a problem, also true if your audience is all from the backwoods south, Git'r done. In polite society however, if you refer to Giting something, you may have more then chagrin to worry about.

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