The Most Heated Debate on Twitter Right Now Is About Fried Potatoes

published Sep 5, 2018
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Chips, fries, crisps: What’s in a name? Twitter got into a tizzy yesterday as people around the world discussed the nomenclature of various fried potato snacks.

The argument kicked off when British user @BlueBernardo tweeted three photos, which he identified as chips, fries, and crisps, respectively, and “anything else is wrong,” opening up a giant-bag-of-potato-chips-sized controversy. With 30,000 retweets, 3,500 replies, and 110,000 likes — the latter presumably from incorrect British folks — a debate began to rage.

Steak fries, french fries, chips, shoestring fries, skinny fries, straws, kettle chips: people from around the Anglophone world identified what they would call each of the photos (and also told off those who didn’t agree). “This just got to American Twitter,” observed the author. “And they are getting so offended.”

“British propaganda,” “This is why we fought and won a war of independence,” and “This is why you no longer have an empire,” came the onslaught.

But the most interesting part of the discussion is watching the regional differences pour in from around the English-speaking world and beyond, as people piped in from New Zealand (with Tongan, as well as English), Pakistan, Germany, France, and beyond. Even frozen french fry company McCain’s U.K. retweeted the original tweet with an “FYI.”

Most Americans call the first two “french fries,” and the third “potato chips,” while Aussies insist they’re all “chips,” which leads me to the unfortunate position of considering that the Brits might be in the right here; their words are certainly the most precise. But, as user @PenguPooh tweeted, “Can’t we all just love potatoes in peace? They’re all delicious.” Which I give a hard agree to, but also, if we’re going to bicker about fries, can we please go back to how incredibly wrong this chart was?

Where do you stand in the great french fry debate?