This may not be qualified as a query.

Over what percentage of acceptance as idiomatic would normally be considered as felicitous?

For example, if 70% of native speakers agree a phrase is idiomatic, would it be regarded as an accepted use in that language? It may well vary, but what are commonly used guidelines if any?

  • Nobody every knows what 70% of native speakers think about anything. There are no such surveys. Have you ever heard of one? It would be prohibitively expensive to run one, and which phrases out of billions would you ask about?
    – jlawler
    Jun 2 '18 at 3:47
  • 3
    90% of survey knowledge regarding language opinions comes from undergraduates in low-level intro courses 99% of who are coerced into participating for free. Those subjects probably constitute under .01% of the "population" in the technical sense. So all we need to do is force more people to take intro courses.
    – user6726
    Jun 2 '18 at 4:59
  • @jlawler Hi. You are right. I was talking about assumption from a limited size survey. I should have phrased how we could 'assume' the usage is widely, or commonly, accepted. Well, maybe showing the acceptance figure in the survey is the only way. And leave it to the readers to decide.
    – Sssamy
    Jun 2 '18 at 8:40
  • @user6726: But these days, for major languages we have MTurk, which allows us to get a much more representative sample. It's still biased against non-Internet users (so you'd likely get fewer samples from elderly) but def. better than coercing LING101 students. Jun 2 '18 at 10:49
  • Don't forget that the real language is spoken, not written. Not even tweeted. Any source relying on letters instead of sounds is not dealing with (or showing anything about real language (though it's usually very interesting, for a relatively short time).
    – jlawler
    Jun 2 '18 at 16:56

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