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Square brackets are most commonly used around the word 'sic' (from the Latin 'sicut', meaning 'just as'), to explain the status of an apparent mistake. Generally, sic means the foregoing mistake (or apparent mistake) was made by the writer/speaker I am quoting; I am but the faithful messenger; in fact I never get anything wrong myself. Book reviewers in particular adore to use sic. It makes them feel terrific, because what it means is that they've spotted this apparent mistake, thank you, so there is no point in writing in. However, there are distinctions within sic: it can signify two different things:

1) This isn't a mistake, actually, it just looks like one to the casual eye.
2) Tee hee, what a dreadful error! But it would be dishonest of me to correct it.

~ From 'Eats, Shoots and Leaves' by Lynne Truss
1) I am grateful to Mrs Bollock sic for the following examples.
2) "Please send a copy of The Time's sic," he wrote.

~ Again, from 'Eats, Shoots and Leaves' by Lynne Truss
by Carly291287 June 05, 2004
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Used when quoting someone directly (usually in newspapers) and placed after the person being quoted makes a spelling error. The journalist/writer inserts (sic) to inform the reader that they aware of the spelling error but left it that way as to keep the quote verbatim

This is usually used for written quotes ie. letters
the girl wrote a letter to her mother:
"Dear Mum, I want to no (sic) how you have been"
by luke1111111111111111111111 December 12, 2005
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Said in Context

Used in journalism when someone uses slang or misspeaks and the author doesn't correct it to keep the quote intact.
"Don't let nobody (sic) come in here"
by Goose48 January 09, 2006
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(sic) (Latin for "thus") is a bracketed expression used to indicate that an unusual spelling, phrase, or any other preceding quoted material is intended to be read or printed exactly as shown (rather than being an error) and should not be corrected. When found in a French document, (sic) stands for "Sans Intention Comique" (without comic intention) meaning that even if the preceding text could be understood as funny, it was not meant to be. It is used by writers quoting someone to alert the reader to the fact that an error or other weirdness in the quoted material is in the original, and not an error of transcription. "Sic" is almost always enclosed in parentheses.

A simple way to remember what it means is to consider sic as a pnemonic for 'spelt in context'.
1. I M (sic) and tired of literary shortcuts! - Used here to amplify that the shortcut "I M" is a shortcut used intentionally instead of "I am"

2. Not Here Today - I am il (sic).

3. Good grammer sic and spelling is sic important for writing good papers.
by Ravi Abraham January 12, 2005
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1) also (sic); used when quoting someone and the person being quoted made a spelling error. This shows that the writer is aware of the mistake but doesn't correct it in order to quote properly.

2) used in chats and forums to point out that someone has made a dumb or disgusting remark. Also used to point out spelling and/or grammar mistakes or annoying txt tlk.
Can be used with or without square brackets.
1) "Your (sic) not aware of this mistake, are you?"

A: ur a hot gurl??!1

B: sic
by Zombie Jesus_the second December 01, 2010
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Used in lieu of "attack," and used in association with the aggressive actions of someone or something, especially a dog.
"Sic 'em, boy!"
"I'm gonna sic him on you."
by labortius December 07, 2006
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A friendly term used by fans of Slipknot (Maggots) to basically say "stay cool" or "stay the same". Originated from the actual song by Slipknot called "(sic)".
Stay (sic) fucker!
by a_Mad_Teaparty November 13, 2007
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