Quickie Rant…

…and while I’m on the subject, another thing that annoys me about the abuses of the English language foisted on us by the popular press is the continued prevalence of journalese. I don’t know about you, but it always makes the tabloids in particular seem extra shouty and hysterical.

This morning’s The Sun, for example, which someone’s left in our office kitchen, continues their shocking, undoubtedly front page-worthy, story from last year about the fact that someone in the fashion industry may have taken drugs, by suggesting on the front page that the “drugs case [against Kate Moss is] in tatters after Cop Quiz”. So what’s a “cop quiz”, then? Is that like a pub quiz? Do all the police sit around tables trying to think of answers to questions about pointless legal action involving celebrities? Do they have to drop the case brought by the team with the least points?

The broadsheets are just as bad, too: also on Moss, today’s Indie tells me, helpfully, that all this started when “video footage of her allegedly using cocaine emerged last year”. So tell me, how exactly can the video show her allegedly using cocaine? Surely it either shows her using it or not–isn’t the allegation of cocaine use yours, Mr Indie (or the News of the World’s, for that matter)? Just because “allegedly” has become a catch-all disclaimer from the printing of legally dubious statements, it doesn’t mean you can confer the ability to make these assertions onto inanimate objects, just to attempt to avoid being sued for libel…

3 thoughts on “Quickie Rant…”

  1. boss
    video nasty

    Love ’em. “Probe.” What a horrible, great word. Can you believe Ford named one of their cars after it?

    (Word list from http://www.englishandmedia.co.uk/

  2. “romp”, “boffins”, “experts”… I could go on.

    Interesting article on that link, by the way, although the repeated references to Today clearly date it back to some time in the mid 90s, it’s interesting to see that nothing’s really changed (I notice that the The Daily Express were clearly just as obsessed with Diana back then as they are now). And I rather enjoyed the section on “Tabloidese”.

    Oh, and “probe”? Well, I have mentioned that before:

    Ferguson Faces Elbow Probe

Comments are closed.