Tuesday, June 14, 2011

100 phrases that should be banned

Juhn Rentoul has an article in The Independent today listing the phrases he thinks should be outlawed. I present the latest version here blatantly lifted from his blog.  Many, many more are offered in the comments.

Make every effort to avoid using:

1. It’s the economy, stupid.
2. A week is a long time in politics. Or variants thereof, such as, “If a week is a long time in politics then a month seems an eternity.”
3. What part of x don’t you understand? Although this one seems to have nearly died out already.
4. Way beyond, or way more.
5. Any time soon.
6. “Events, dear boy, events.”
7. Learning curve.
8. Raising awareness.
9. Celebrating diversity.
10. In any way, shape or form.
11. Inclusive.
12. Community, especially a vibrant one.
13. Hearts and minds.
14. Celebrity.
15. Makeover.
16. Lifestyle.
17. Going forward.
18. A forward policy.
19. A big ask.
20. At this moment in time.
21. Not fit for purpose.
22. Hard-working families.
23. Apologies for lack of postings.
24. Black hole (in a financial context).
25. The elephant in the room.
26. Perfect storm.
27. Seal the deal.
28. A good election to lose.
29. Game-changer.
30. Beginning an article with “So”.
31. IMO, IMHO, LOL, ROFL and so on. I mean, whose opinion is it going to be? Genuinely witty abbreviations, however, are permitted, for example, QTWTAIN, YYSSW, IICRS.
32. Vibrant (when used to mean lots of non-English people).
33. Progressive.
34. Arguably, as in “arguably the most perfect village in the Siebenburgen” (Spectator, 24 July 2010).
35. Headlines beginning “Now”, as in Now You Pay for Prison Parties.
36. We will take no lessons on x from y.
37. Beginning a report with “They came”.
38. Iconic.
39. “Action” as a verb.
40. Parameter.
41. The level of.
42. A sense of.
43. A series of.
44. The introduction of.
45. A package of. Especially measures.
46. A basket of.
47. A raft of.
48. A range of.
49. The prospect of.
50. (All) the hallmarks of.
51. “Leverage” as a verb.
52. U-turn as a verb.
53. Dislocate as a noun. Or disconnect.
54. Toilet, storyline or any other unsuitable noun as a verb.
55. Exponential or exponentially used to mean big or a lot.
56. Incredible or incredibly as intensifiers.
57. On a daily basis.
58. It’s in his/her/their DNA.
59. Let’s be clear.
60. At the end of the day.
61. Organic, to refer to anything unrelated to farming or to the chemical science that deals with carbon-based compounds.
62. “The truth is…” before the peddling of an opinion.
63. End of.
64. Any journey not describing travel from A to B.
65. A no-brainer.
66. Pot, kettle.
67. What’s not to like?
68. Max out (in relation to credit cards only).
69. He/she gets it. They get it. He/she/it just doesn’t get it.
70. “All the evidence tells us” to mean “I’ve read something about this somewhere that confirms my prejudices”.
71. Fairly unique.
72. Paradigm shift. Or anything to do with a paradigm.
73. Quantum leap, except to mean a very small change of fixed magnitude.
74. Step change.
75. Sea change.
76. Real people and the real world. In real time.
77. Coffee, the waking up and smelling thereof.
78. Ongoing.
79. Project, except in the construction industry.
80. “No longer.” (Following a loving description of The Way We Were.)
81. Agenda, except to describe a list of things to be discussed in a meeting.
82. Out of the box (especially thinking).
83. Kick the can down the road.
84. Psychodrama. (To describe any tense political relationship.)
85. Radar, to be on someone’s, or to be under the.
86. Name and shame.
87. Does what it says on the tin.
88. Stakeholder.
89. Deliverables.
90. Key (adjective). Especially keynote speech.
91. Enough already.
92. Who knew?
93. Epic fail.
94. See what I/he/she did there?
95. Not so much.
96. Beleaguered, except of a city, town or fort with turrets.
97. Rolling out, except carpet, wallpaper or logs.
98. Forward planning (until invention of time machine allowing other kinds).
99. “And yet, and yet …”
100. The suffix -gate added to any news theme supposedly embarrassing to a government.

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