Originally Posted by ShelledPants
And I suppose you could "silence" a rifle shooting .22 loaded with subsonic ammunition to the point where the bolt moving is louder than the report...
I've seen/heard it, its nuts how quiet they can be (yes it was a backyard illegal mod by some rednecks I know.)
Silencer is a real term though only applies so a small number of really old sound suppressing devices (some of the original production models I think), its not made up by hollywood.
But like was said, common usage and being able to be understood. For example "prioritize" was not a real word until recently in english. To put things in order of priority is properly known as "priorize" but through common usage "prioritize" has entered the dictionary. Everyone back in the day knew what you where saying when you said "prioritize" even if it wasn't 100% correct.