Monday, January 02, 2006

USATODAY.com - Survey tracks 2005's most annoying phrases

USATODAY.com - Survey tracks 2005's most annoying phrases: "THE ANNOYING LIST

Words Lake Superior State has banished 'for mis-use, over-use and general uselessness':
Surreal
Hunker down
Person of interest
Community of learners
Up-or-down vote
Breaking news
Designer breed
FEMA
First-time caller
Pass the savings on to you!
97% fat-free
An accident that didn't have to happen
Junk science
Git-r-done
Dawg
Talking points
Holiday tree"




I thought this interesting, a list of annoying phrases from 2005. I'm not sure I'm as annoyed with the phrase "person of interest" as the folks at Lake Superior State are. I see it as sort of jargon for saying that police can not say an individual is a suspect, but they need to talk to that person anyway. Breaking news is sort of journalism jargon too. Perhaps that falls into Lake Superior State's category of over-used. And when every story is breaking news, then you have to distinguish it with "late breaking news" or some other distinguishing phrase. I thought putting FEMA on the list deviated from the criteria of a useless word instead says the agency itself was useless. Humor benifit yes. But on the other hand, if an agency changes leadership and works hard, when do they get to live down the reputation tarnish? Lastly I saw their "up or down vote" as more of a political statement rather than one that was linguistic. Or maybe I don't watch enough news. It seems funny to me that most of this comes from journalism rather than from everday speech. Which says something about how the list was compiled.

Please leave a comment tell us what word or phrase would you say is mis-used, over-used, or generally useless?
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