. . . all credit to the inimitable V. Alan White for the suggestion.
On Thursday morning at the Pacific APA I announced my choice for a new collective noun for philosophers. As the header says, the winner was a fog of philosophers. (Thanks, by the way, to everyone who attended the session, even those of you with devastating objections to my view.) I settled on 'fog' because where there is one philosopher there is hope for clarity; where there is two there is none. Plus, I do like alliteration.
As readers of this blog will know, there were a lot of really great suggestions for a new collective noun for philosophers. My personal favorites were Saul Smilansky's suggestions, including a Vargas of philosophers. And, I loved obviously excellent choices like 'gruep' and 'group*', among several others. However, I decided to deploy a set of standards that ruled out many worthwhile choices. These standards included (1) no confusing collective nouns (e.g., an argument of philosophers), (2) nothing cutesy, necessarily pun-involving, or insider-y (the last two ruled out many of my favorites), (3) nothing that presumed a particular philosophical tradition, subfield, or time period of philosophy, (4) nothing pre-existing, only because that would ruin the fun (and plus, my sense was that no existing convention had stuck), so I ruled out Lipton's wrangle of philosophers, rightly recommended by Hilary Kornblith, (5) nothing so offensive that it would make someone blush or offend delicate sensitivities. These standards narrowed the scope for me, and fog just seemed like the best choice at the time.
So, I hereby encourage the use of 'fog' as the collective noun for philosophers. However, if you don't like it or find it altogether intolerable, I can remind you that there are several species that admit of multiple collective noun terms. So, feel free to add your own unless you can't. :-)