Ridiculous Rant – EST vs. EDT

Something that has been driving me absolutely nuts lately is peoples’ use of EST. “Can we set something up for Monday at 11 EST?” No, we can’t. Want to know why? Because it is NOT Standard time. Daylight Savings Time makes spring and summer fall into Daylight time. We can set a meeting up for Monday at 11 EDT. No one seems to know that EST or CST or MST or PST do not apply all year round. How is that so difficult to be educated about??

I know, it’s an incredibly ridiculous thing to be bothered by, but I’m a quasi-ridiculous person.

Learn it – after “Spring Forward,” you are in Daylight time. After “Fall Back,” you are then in Standard time.


60 responses to “Ridiculous Rant – EST vs. EDT

  1. I agree with you 100%. Thanks for this post it helped confirming my assumption

  2. You are correct, it is a ridiculous rant. If I schedule something for 1:00 EST, who cares if it’s daylight savings or not. It’s obvious what I mean, a people who get bothered by it are just in the mood to be difficult.

    • Thomas Higginbotham

      Until you have to deal with people in places that don’t have daylight saving time. If I’m in Colorado, and I tell someone in Arizona that I’ll meet them at 9:00 AM MST when I should have said MDT, then I’ve just given them the wrong time. Maybe being an hour off isn’t important to some people.

  3. Your a a pain in the Ass

  4. This drives me fricking nuts too.

    Can’t people just type ET or PT or MT or CT? Or just say Eastern, Central, Mountain, Pacific whatever?

    Adding the D or S to any of those just complicates matters.

  5. Good rant….

    since there is a difference between GMT-4 and GMT-5!

    And I actually wanted to know the difference. Thanks!

  6. Daylight savings is what’s ridiculous. Here in Arizona we are in MDT half the year and PST the other half. So when we set something up we don’t worry about whether it’s east coast, west coast, DT or ST, we just say “Arizona time.”

    • No you are not on MDT half the year, and PST the other half, you are simply on MST all year long, and never go to MDT, since you do not observe daylight savings

  7. This drives me insane, mostly because I moved out of the US and learned that there’s a huge population that doesn’t care if the US is on DST or not. They just want to make their conference calls on time. And folks living in lesser known countries know what GMT is, and how to use it.

    But point this out to and the “EST” people say that YOU are the pain in the ass. People who throw EST and EDT interchangeably are the real jerks.

  8. And I HATE it when people say: Daylight Savings Time. DUH!

    It’s Daylight Saving Time. NO damn S.

    • Lol, who gives a flippity frick about that either. The fact that you use either term does not make you more or less of a person or human because of that. Very Irrelevant.

      • This is why it is irrelevant, because if I said savings time, and you corrected me, I will say to you, “who said that”? You will then say, “they said that” or thats the way it is. I will say, “who’s they?” and or “That maybe your way” But not my way. Then you will look stupid because you can’t prove to me who “they” is, because there is nobody named they and you will then look as stupid as I did because you listen to a person named they.

  9. London also has Daylight Saving(S) time, do they also call it GDT then or GMT?
    Keep life simple. agree with the usage of ET or PT.
    How much of u know about countries other than the US?
    Do u know what is the ACRONYM for Australian timezone with/out Daylight Saving time in place??

  10. If you are a U.S. person scheduling meetings with U.S. colleagues, simply use ET, PT, etc.
    If you are scheduling with people in one or more global locations, check a time comparison website like World Clock and include the local time for each party in the text of the email invite.
    Simple. :-)

    PS I could’ve sworn that EDT was October-April, not the other way round. Thanks for setting it straight.

  11. Let me take this one step further, there is no such thing as “Daylight Savings Time”. It’s actually called “Daylight Saving Time” – there’s no ‘s’ at the end of saving, so get your facts straight.

  12. Thank you for the information, but seriously, if this is you’re biggest issue, you really need to get a life.

  13. I came upon this blog as the first search result for “edt vs est”. The reason for my search was for the exact sentiment expressed here. Everyone who wants to “simplify” it by going to ET, Eastern, or anything other than the correct use of D vs T – perhaps you’d also like to simplify some words by omiting extraneous letters? “I hurt me hed” is identical to “I hurt my hed”, right? “Undr” is the same as “Undr”, because you know what I mean, right? Both are easier than actually using all the letters, right? Do you also support the recent inclusion in dictionaries of “OMG”, “LOL” and other text bastardizations of the language?

    No doubt, all much easier than correct use of the language. Don’t be so damned LAZY! Can you abbeviate that?

  14. I’m there with you! If you don’t know it take the 5 seconds to Google EDT vs EST and there you have it.

    • Well, it takes the same 5 seconds to the author of the work if they are typing it to put “Eastern Daylight or Standard Time”. It “drives me crazy” when people are so lazy that they have to abbreviate word so that with most, if you are reading an article certain acronyms have multiple meanings. ATF= Automatic Transmission Fluid and Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, or some are similar, EFT= Electric Funds Transfer and ETF Exchange Traded Fund and even the same again ETF= Employee Trust Fund. The point I am trying to make is, a person should not have to pick up the slack of someone else’s laziness and Google all similar acronyms to decode what they mean just to finish reading what your reading. And there are tons more more examples than I provided. Don’t be lazy and you people won’t get “driven nuts”. Simple solution. Case closed. See, you diddn’t have to wine and complain, be driven nuts and then in turn get pissed off because you will get told off by me if you ever said anything like that to me.

      • “It ‘drives me crazy’ when people are so lazy that they have to abbreviate word so that with most, if you are reading…”. Your grammar is so terrible, I’m not even sure what you’re trying to say here.

        “…just to finish reading what your reading” should be “…just to finish reading what you’re reading”.
        “didd’t” should be “didn’t”
        “wine” should be “whine”

        You win the award for irony for complaining about the laziness of others, when you’re too lazy to use proper grammar or spell check what you write.

  15. Mr. Agreeable

    Totally agree with this rant even though it is nerdy and pedantic. I am one of those people who argues over “it is me” versus “it is I”

    • Lol, and if you argued with me over this pathetic issue, you can watch the back of my head walking away from you after I tell you off by saying, “Oh yea, who gives a flying flippity, you knew what I meant”, and you will continue to argue with yourself. Since you love to inflict stress upon people over a non-important issue.

  16. haha. I just realized this myself (I’m a PhD!!). I was so sure someone was wrong using EDT, but since she’s also a PhD I googled it. Oh well. I know now!!

  17. Because, and I don’t mean to be rude, so no disrespect. But maybe some people don’t care about being Politically correct. If that bothers you, they you need to ask God to to help you deal with that issue. There are too many serious things going on in the world that are actually serious to worry about that people don’t.

    Like the PhD (Liz) above who is highly educated, I diddn’t know that, so that means the problem is some place else than “ignorant people”. So now I don’t feel so bad about knowing this myself. I was reading an news article which mentioned a time of and in EDT, as I read it I said to myself, “what the hell is EDT”? So I had to look it up. I don’t recall ever seeing that before anyways, so it looks like alot of people for so long have been making that “mistake”. So then that means we would fall into the category of “normal”.
    Honestly, I would not feel that bad even if Liz diddn’t leave that message. Why? Because, WHO CARES. You knew what it means. It’s people like you that make it so difficult for simple people. Honestly, it it is the “analness” of people like you that “drive me nuts”. But I have the common decency not to say anything. Why? Because I was taught that if you don’t have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.
    It must be nice to be soooooo perfect in life. I am sure you do things that are not right. Actually, I know you do. If not, you would be GOD. And I doubt you are him. Seriously.

    I laugh sometimes when they say education is a good thing. Because some human changes something or invents something and not the rest of the world had to change the way they think because it “drives you crazy”? I don’t think so. The world was just fine when people say ST or DT. The world did not blow up, you remained alive, so I think you will be fine. If not, smoke a joint and relax, lifes too short to be “drove crazy” by worrying about stuff like this.

    Time is man made, so actually your claim is incorrect. GOD did not supply this world with clocks. Man invented the clock via a sundial. Then clocks came sometime later, so it was man who invented time zones. I am a man, so I can invent stuff. Why not? Man did. Honestly, it “drives me nuts” when people “punch a clock” like they are always in a hurry for something. Hurry for what? To die? Thats going to happen alot quicker for you if you let things like this worry you.

    So your rant is just a product of “opinion”. Your opinion. And we all know what they say about opinions. But just because I did not know that there was a difference between them, does not make me less of a person because of it. I have read the Torah, I have read the Bible and I have read the Koran, and it does not say anywhere in there that not telling time correctly is a sin. So I think we will be fine.

    Honestly, it “drives me crazy” when Americans think the Constitution is a document that guarantees it’s citizens rights, when it a document that restrains government actions. Or when people refer to the united Sates as a democracy, when it’s a Constitutional Republic. Those are two alot more serious issues than what you complained about. Why? because a Democracy is mob rule where the 51% majority gets to dictate to the 49% minority and that undermines some people personal liberties and freedom. Liberty and freedom is the main building block of America. Also, to the ones that think the Constitution is a document that guarantees it’s citizens rights versus restrain government. Because we have out of control power hungry politicians that want to make this into an empire and take away some peoples freedoms and liberty. If you don’t know this, read the Declaration of Independence and compare it to reality or what is happening today, you will find a ton of similarities between our government and and King Georges British Crown. So what was the point of Declaring Independence in the first place and risking and losing all those lives in the American Revolution?

    But as far as your “rant”. After this episode, I will still continue to use the term EST, why? Because it is so irrelevant that I will not care to remember. And because I have so much of a hatred for being politically correct, I will now continue to do it. Why? because you know what I or we mean, you just have to be difficult.

  18. Diddn’t it ever occur to you people that maybe if someone used EST they mean “Eastern Standard” time instead of “Eastern Saving time”? Honestly, I have never heard of Eastern Saving Time, I have only heard of “Standard time” being used. I just Googled Eastern Saving Time, an it does not exist. Daylight saving time exists, but not Eastern Saving Time.

    So before you look stupid next time and assume when someone uses EST that they mean saving time, I would think twice because I will make you feel stupid like I just did. So chill out, smoke a joint, and relax.

    As far as “saving” time concept, I understand that only the U.S., but we did not invent the concept. Our government did for what ever reason. We know our government as well as the British government does things that don’t make sense anyways. But we just use it for reference to estimate time.

    Actually, it makes sense, it the spring, we set the clock ahead, so it stays light later in the summertime for chilling outside.

    In the winter, who cares, nobody wants to be outside anyways.

  19. Reading through the comments on this post, I am amazed at the number of people that are proud of being ignorant. So, I should “dumb it down” for you because a simple concept like Daylight Saving Time vs Standard Time is too difficult for you to comprehend? I have been known (as many said above) to correct “I” vs “me”, “a” vs “an”, and even things like 5 minus 3 (it isn’t 5 minus 3, its 5 plus negative 3, get it straight bitches).

    Don’t be proud of ignorance… don’t be mad at intelligence…you PSA for the day :)

    • Should be “your PSA for the day”…before the trolls attack!

    • I was with you until your difficulty with “5 minus 3.” Dunno where you got your math degree, but “minus” is a perfectly valid word for the subtraction operation. (Even worse, if we’re working purely in the domain of natural numbers, the concept “negative three” doesn’t even exist! :)

    • UselessCommenter

      It is “it’s” not “its” for the contracted form of it is…. bitches. :)

  20. This page ate up ten minutes of my life I’ll never get back. A waste of time whether you call it EST/DST or ET. Worse than the original rant was the number of idiots who chimed in with it.

    PS- It’s not Daylight Savings Time it’s Daylight SAVING Time – without the S.

  21. If somebody sets a conference call at 8 PM EST, and I live in that zone, when would I join the conference call since we are in Daylight Saving Time (DST)?

    • Ah, Doug Ross, you’ve hit the nail on the head. This is the main reason for my irritation at seeing “EST” or “PST” during the period of the year that we’re in Daylight Saving Time. I sincerely and honestly am not trying to be a prick or to insult anyone or even correct them. Today is June 24. We’re in Daylight Saving Time. I received a meeting request for 2:00 PM EST, June 26. To me, the way my brain works, that means that this person wants to meet at 3 PM on the 26th and inexplicably translated it back to Standard Time. I can’t help it. This is how my brain works. I realize that intellectual laziness, apathy, and acceptance of ignorance and lack of education have become the norm in our society. I don’t want to accept it, but other than my own children, I have no influence or authority over anyone else on the planet. So I have to go through life wondering why someone who wishes to see me at 3:00 PM would write it as 2:00 PM and make me translate it into the correct time for the time of year. When I ask people “Do you mean 3 PM on Wednesday since we’re in Daylight Saving Time, or did you make a mistake and write Standard Time even though we’ve been in Daylight Saving Time for months now?” they think I’m being an ass or being condescending. I’m really not. I’m just trying to figure out what damn time to show up for the damn meeting. It wasn’t me that made the dumb mistake, so I shouldn’t have to suffer for it.

      • Or, if you don’t follow DST, like the act doesn’t require you to do (suppose, for example, that you don’t like daylight or the sun setting so late, so you follow how time was originally defined, by the sun but standardized for the central meridian of your time zone). If someone tells me there is a meeting at 2pm EST, I interpret that as 2pm EST. If someone thinks that is 2pm PDT (2pm Atlantic Time), then they aren’t communicating the time zone correctly. They might then show up for the meeting an hour early. “Eastern Time” wouldn’t work either because that is defined as GMT-5 hours, local time at the 75th meridian, and doesn’t change definitions just because some people decided they wanted to add an arbitrary hour to their clocks and try to force everyone else to do it too.

  22. Since some countries and even here in the US Arizona and some cities do NOT follow daylight saving time or change over on different days, the distinction is important when you are scheduling things. It may sound little but I’ve been burned before by not being specific enough…

  23. I think we should all simply switch to SDT (Star Date Time)…

  24. This post provided an outlet for my daily escape from work, experienced at 3:30 p.m. EST everyday … or is that EDT … or is it … err. .. ee … ahhhhhhh!

  25. I feel like everyone should make a “google pilgrimmage” to this blog post to read the absurd comments during their lifetime.

  26. It isn’t ridiculous, it is pedantic. If somebody is going to be so inane, as and use EST, then they should be persecuted for using it incorrectly. True, this only matters twice a year, say, when bars close at 2:00 am EDT and not 2:00 am EST.
    If you wasted 10 minutes of your life reading this, and then commented about it, what does that say about you?

  27. I really find it annoying when people refer to the delightful 1982 film by Steven Spielberg as “EST.”

  28. I agree that you have a point as I was actually wondering myself, BUT… you are more than quasi-ridiculous, you’re full blown ridiculous. There are sources on the internet other than your rant which would have told us the same thing! Stop being such a ‘quasi’ ridiculous WHINER!

  29. It annoys me when a company says their customer service is available 9:00 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST. Do they change their message every six months?

  30. @pax2u– Since this thread is all about splitting hairs anyway, I wanted to point out that here in Arizona we are actually in MST in half the year and PDT the other half, not the other way around as you explained. Your sentiment is well taken, though.

  31. I completely agree with the poster. It drives me crazy, too–and it happens a lot. I live in Chicago (currently under CDT) and frequently have to schedule interviews with editors and experts (many of whom hold PhDs) in both New York and L.A. And almost all of them set up appointments for 10:00 “EST” or “PST,” even in spring and summer. Just now, someone scheduled an appointment with me for 2:30 EST. I wrote back, “Sounds good! I’ll give you a call at 2:30 EDT.” Was my response condescending or passive aggressive? Possibly. But I truly cannot bring myself to say, “Sure, I’ll call you at 2:30 EST,” when it is clearly wrong. If my statement confuses her, fine. She can either think I’m incorrect or pedantic…or she can google “EDT” and find this website and realize there’s actually a distinction between the two.

  32. Here IS something cool. How many time zones are there? (I don’t mean the oddball 15 minutes zones. I mean, the regular zones.)
    You’d think 24, right — one for every 15% around the planet (more or less). But actually the answer is 25! Can you guess where the “extra” zone is?? Spoiler alert: here comes the answer.
    The answer is that where the International Date Line is, just like with Greenwich, the 180 degree longitude is in the MIDDLE of its time zone, not on a boundary. And duh — 15 degrees to the east it’s Monday at 4:22 PM and 15 degrees to the west it’s Sunday at 4:22 PM. Voila! Two different times, hence two different time zones!! So there are 25 zones, not 24. Cool bar bet, don’t you think?

    • Sorry, I screwed up this post! First of all, I meant “15 degrees”, NOT “15%”. Secondly, I meant “7.5 degrees to the east” and “7.5 degrees to the west” NOT “15 degrees …”

      • God damn! I screwed it up again! I meant “7.5 degrees to the WEST it’s Monday” and “7.5 degrees to the EAST it’s Sunday”. Hah! Any other errors???

  33. Five years later, I completely agree with the point of your post, but I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that what you’re referring to it as “Daylight Savings Time”, is actually called “Daylight Saving Time”.

  34. To me, it doesn’t matter because MOST ALL of the U.S. changes the time at the same time. So, MOST ALL of us in the U.S. are on the same page anyway. What we really should do is just note the actual time zone you in by using ET, CT, MT and PT. No need to worry if we’re on Daylight Savings time or Standard time. It doesn’t matter. Just the time zone matters.

  35. As long as we’re going to nitpick, standard time actually does “apply all year round” though it may not be what most people are intending to reference.

    We can set a meeting up for Monday at 11 EDT. No one seems to know that EST or CST or MST or PST do not apply all year round.

  36. @Rory, doesn’t the same apply 2 hours before and 2 hours after… so you could also say there are 26?

    @Mike, you may care more if you lived near Arizona, or occasionally interacted with anyone outside the US.

    More generally the difference matters to many professional and amateur fields such as business and astronomy, which may be more accessible if the general public was better informed. I’m all for getting rid of DST, but as long as we use it we should also understand it.

    • @notbugme — no the same does NOT apply 2 hours before and 2 hours after (and I assume you mean “and 3 hours, and 4 hours, etc. etc.”) And the reason should be obvious (unless I misunderstand your question.) This issue of the split zone is ONLY for the one right ON the dateline, since it’s ONLY there that the DAY is different in the two halves of the zone. Obviously that difference does NOT occur in EVERY zone — the earth only needs to “reset” the day ONCE! Once per day, that is, and of course, the entire earth represents one “day”. Is it clear?? Thanks.

  37. I don’t think it is a ridiculous rant, and I agree with you. How can so many people be so lazy and ignorant about it. Just can not help myself to correct people, or ask for clarification when they don’t use it correctly for meetings or office hours, etc. Nick, I believe ET just defines the Eastern Time zone, and then within ET, Standard time is defined to be UTC-5, and EDT is defined to be UTC-4. I think it is pretty safe to use ET if most or all of the time zone is always on the same time, I will make the correct assumption.

    Parts of Indiana used to stay on EST all year long though, so here in Southwest Michigan it was especially important whether the time was EST or EDT, and the two are not the same. When people get upset with me for asking during the summer if the time is really EST, and say something like, you know what, I meant, what;s the difference? I usually say, the difference is one hour :)…

  38. Agree with this post. I just criticized a major media outlet on this subject: https://twitter.com/jbrams/status/618400947874713601

  39. You sound like a tool. Just so you know.

  40. This comment thread is epic. I just had to leave my own comment for posterity. Hope I made a typo somewhere.

    Spiitz Travsky was here!

  41. Wow! I love these posts! I get all worked up about ‘miles an hour’, ‘different than’, ‘so fun’, and the ubiquitous use of ‘like’, but I think that Bill Soveringski really deserves a prize for the longest rant over an acronym. I wonder what he has to say about the upcoming election!

  42. I was happy to find this article, because it drives me nuts also. If you don’t know if it is daylight savings or standard time (which is another story) just say ET or CT or MT or PT

    • While we are on the subject of our favorite misused acronyms or grammatical transgressions, what about “coming down the pipe” instead of pike?
      And segway vs. segue, though thankfully, that once commonplace business buzzword seems to have rapidly faded into obscurity.
      Lastly, when I get off of an aircraft, I disembark. I will never deplane.

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