Friday, October 09, 2009

Just in Time for Thanksgiving,
Your Chance to Bag A Turkey

"Are you fed up with meaningless gobbledygook? Words that mean little or nothing? Empty phrases? Vague writing that confuses rather than communicates? Now is your chance to fight back against bureaucratese, legalese, technobabble, government-speak and other assaults on the English language. Announcing the first Online Gobbledygook, Gibberish and Jargon Awards(TM)." You can nominate some bad examples you find by sending them here. I think you already know we're in sympathy with any attempts to stamp out assaults on clear language. If you do send along a bad example or two, we hope you'll also share it with us here.

7 Comments:

At 8:28 AM, Blogger Jim Murdoch said...

You know, I secretly (well, it's no secret now) like gobbledygook. Language is fun and should be played with. I do it with our bird all the time. I'll say, "What's all that squalkification about?" or "Stop shoutifying at me, young sir." I used to work in the civil service and we had our own langauge - 'abbreviationese' would best describe it and I quite revelled in it I have to say.

 
At 10:14 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

When you put it that way, it's nearly impossible to disagree with, Jim. Language should indeed be fun. Damn, you're good!

 
At 11:19 PM, Blogger kasscho said...

I agree with Jim, but I must say I am terminally tired of the use of 'paradigm.' Kuhn had no idea what he started with this one. He is quoted as saying it was used to specifically mean 'exemplar,' that is," the founding book or experiment of a particular science, and that the rest of the elements that make up normal science should be called the 'disciplinary matrix.'" People use it indiscriminately. I've just started saying, "Well, under the construct of my parapenny, when you speak from your paradigm, it makes me sick," to get back at them.

 
At 11:25 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Nice. The rise of and absurd overuse of terms such as paradigm and robust are mostly remnants of consulting firmese, which has a lingo of its own.

 
At 5:15 PM, Blogger Maria said...

It's a shame that a bird as unpretentious and lovely as a turkey gets a bad rap. (Just saw a group of turkeys out for a stroll in Chardon's autumn splendor.) Wonder what the etymology of the word is...or rather, "I might soon seek to contemplate and further document and elucidate the etymological origins of the verbal configuration evocative of a game bird known in most circles as..."

 
At 8:12 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Okay, you've convinced me not to take any more cheap shots at turkeys.

 
At 12:05 AM, Blogger Maria said...

http://web.mit.edu/mskilic/www/turkeyname.html

Anyone looking for a wild goose chase, etymologically, see the above.

 

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