[thelist] OT (verbage)

Greg Strange gstrange at e-tsi.com
Thu Aug 17 11:39:41 CDT 2000

I just had to finally stop cubing my urges to respond on this topic because
I thought it would fade away eventually.  While I am certainly firmly in the
corner of everyone who responded concerning the incorrect use of vocabulary,
i.e., policemen and their proclivity for $50 words especially in giving
testimony, I do want to make a small point concerning the use of words like
"impact" and other such linguistic curiosities.

I remember several years ago when a group of people were trying to get the
word "silly" to revert to it's original "Anglo-Saxon" meaning of someone who
laughs at inappropriate times.  This is obviously tilting t windmills but I
think the impetus behind that is just as suspect as some of the comments and
arguments I have heard presented here on the subject.  Granted naming  car
the Ford Impact does not sit comfortably with me.  But I can't see where I
can stop someone, or disparage them moreover, for using a word that their
audience understands.  Do you understand what they mean when they say
verbage?  Then it is a valid use of the word.  If not, ask for
clarification.  This is the way that humans have refined and
increased/decreased their vocabulary for centuries.

I must agree however that the use of phrases like "Let's russian-doll this"
is completely out of hand.  Too clever means abstruse in my book.  Of
course, my all time favourite is, "I want to add some webiary content to
this newsletter."  According to the birdbrain who said this meant that he
wanted content that wouldn't be included in the print version of newsletter
but only in the web version of the newsletter.  In other words, an incentive
for people to start getting their newsletter off the wbesite instead of in
their mailbox.

Forwehat it's worth.

"Sometimes it's hard to believe that I am paid to
convince people to sit in a dark room for two hours and pay for it."
                -Cecil B. DeMille

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