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Thread: Language

  1. #61
    Senior Member Paddler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    I once saw a corporate clown stand up in front of an auditorium of electrical engineers and say, "We must leverage our synergies to maximize the margin on our deliverables." People turned and looked at each other with interobangs appearing over their heads.
    "Nothing is enough for the man to whom enough is too little." -Epicurus-

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    Senior Member Dreck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by Paddler View Post
    I once saw a corporate clown stand up in front of an auditorium of electrical engineers and say, "We must leverage our synergies to maximize the margin on our deliverables." People turned and looked at each other with interrobangs appearing over their heads.
    This is the kind of stuff that sends me into paroxysms of rage. Language is a cultural construct, and as such may well be prone to adaptation and alteration. Having said that, ridiculous corporate-speak peppered with currently popular keywords is at best riding on others' coattails to be one of the "cool kids" and at worst an intentional obfuscation. It isn't effective (which should be a function of language, and especially of linguistic adaptations), it isn't Lean, and it is almost always perpetrated by someone who wants to sound smarter or more authoritative than they actually are. Dealing with students who write like that in their dissertations and research papers and trying to help them choose appropriate words (as opposed to simply picking something from Thesaurus.com) to find their own voice in academic writing is a rant for another time, however. I'll simply sign off with this pictorial commentary...
    Photosynthesis.jpg
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  3. #63
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreck View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paddler View Post
    I once saw a corporate clown stand up in front of an auditorium of electrical engineers and say, "We must leverage our synergies to maximize the margin on our deliverables." People turned and looked at each other with interrobangs appearing over their heads.
    This is the kind of stuff that sends me into paroxysms of rage. ... ]
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?



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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?
    A musing: must language always be precise? Are there not manifest uses for the vague and the impassioned, words bent in the heat of the moment for color rather than clarity?
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by Paddler View Post
    I once saw a corporate clown stand up in front of an auditorium of electrical engineers and say, "We must leverage our synergies to maximize the margin on our deliverables." People turned and looked at each other with interobangs appearing over their heads.
    Unless he's your boss simply write to him off as a non-entity.

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    Senior Member AzJon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?
    A musing: must language always be precise? Are there not manifest uses for the vague and the impassioned, words bent in the heat of the moment for color rather than clarity?
    Or just for jargon. I mean, y'all, we are in a hobby that sentences like, "I really love a good gusher" or "Well, I don't want it too wet, but not to dry, either," can be said without blushing. Is there any real precision to describing sub-culture specific things?

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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?
    A musing: must language always be precise? Are there not manifest uses for the vague and the impassioned, words bent in the heat of the moment for color rather than clarity?
    Ask Dreck. I was responding to his strictures. I think language can do anything, be anything. I have no problem with these changes, and certainly no rage.

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    Senior Member FredRydr's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Aye!

  11. #69
    Senior Member Dreck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?

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    Note that I said effective, not precise. I do value precision and economy in language, but precision and effectiveness are not always the same. Language is, after all, as much art as science
    Last edited by Dreck; February 24th, 2020 at 09:25 PM.
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by kazoolaw View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paddler View Post
    I once saw a corporate clown stand up in front of an auditorium of electrical engineers and say, "We must leverage our synergies to maximize the margin on our deliverables." People turned and looked at each other with interobangs appearing over their heads.
    Unless he's your boss simply write to him off as a non-entity.
    I had one job, in one office, in the same building for 11 years. Three different companies owned the place. In that time, I had 26 bosses (at different times; I made a list). I regularly told those ejits to get twisted and ran 'em out of my office. I would say something like, "I am not going to wear a goddam necktie at your behest. If you want to fire me have at it; your six months are about up anyway. There is a customer in Effingham that needs help. Tell Julie to get me plane tickets, a rental car, and a hotel room. Now, un-ass my office; you are stinking up the place."

    You can get away with that if you are good at what you do.
    "Nothing is enough for the man to whom enough is too little." -Epicurus-

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    Default Re: Language

    Long long ago and in a land far far away I was sent to work in a location that was simply falling behind. I arrived on the scene and sure enough, everything and everyone was in full crisis mode. The knock on my office door with someone that had a crisis and absolutely needed help and a solution was pretty much non-stop.

    So I made a list. Someone shows up with a major panic I asked them to please sit down and explain. I wrote down everything they said and then said "Great, I have it and we will take this up on Thursday when we have the next Panic Meeting.

    The normal reaction was that it couldn't wait until Thursday and the world was about to end and ... I told them "Got it. I'll make a point to telling everyone how serious this is Thursday!"

    The first few Panic Meetings were loud but I always scheduled the meeting right before quitting time so they were also short. By the third meeting the world still had not ended and there were only a couple items on my list and everyone voted to not have Panic Meetings on a regular basis. By the end of the month productivity was back on track and life in the office was much nicer.

    So I got sent ...
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Yikes. Since you value precision of language, I will assume that this is not hyperbole. But, really?
    A musing: must language always be precise? Are there not manifest uses for the vague and the impassioned, words bent in the heat of the moment for color rather than clarity?
    Ask Dreck. I was responding to his strictures. I think language can do anything, be anything. I have no problem with these changes, and certainly no rage.
    You've obviously never been in a position requiring you to deal with higher-ups at work who burble endless, meaningless drivel, with your livelihood and the well-being of your family depending on your ability to understand and implement it. It's not something you'd be likely to enjoy.
    Quid rides? Mutato nomine de te fabula narratur. — Horace
    (What are you laughing at? Just change the name and the joke’s on you.)

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    Senior Member Lady Onogaro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by catbert View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Onogaro View Post
    ..."they" as a non-gendered singular pronoun....
    That's not an evolution; that's an invention.
    But an old one.

    http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/langu...es/002748.html

    https://public.oed.com/blog/a-brief-...singular-they/
    Thank you, catbert.
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by calamus View Post

    You've obviously never been in a position requiring you to deal with higher-ups at work who burble endless, meaningless drivel, with your livelihood and the well-being of your family depending on your ability to understand and implement it. It's not something you'd be likely to enjoy.
    Me? Sure I have. And, no, I haven't enjoyed it. I just said that I am shocked by "rage" over it.

    I tend more to respond with conspiratorial mockery behind the scenes. Satire. Stuff like that.

    Or beer.

    Rage? Nah. Too self-defeating.



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    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Quote Originally Posted by TSherbs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by calamus View Post

    You've obviously never been in a position requiring you to deal with higher-ups at work who burble endless, meaningless drivel, with your livelihood and the well-being of your family depending on your ability to understand and implement it. It's not something you'd be likely to enjoy.
    Me? Sure I have. And, no, I haven't enjoyed it. I just said that I am shocked by "rage" over it.

    I tend more to respond with conspiratorial mockery behind the scenes. Satire. Stuff like that.

    Or beer.

    Rage? Nah. Too self-defeating.



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    I agree with that. Not joining in, in the most obvious way possible was my way of dealing with that. Refusing to understand commands that were not made in usual English. Not all bosses used that dreadful business-speak and those who did were mostly the light-weights who were just a nuisance anyway. Our contempt was always poorly concealed.
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    Senior Member Dreck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Language

    Sure, you can feign ignorance and smugly mock behind your sleeve when it's communication coming down from above, but when you are the one trying to help these people become better and more effective communicators and leaders, that simply isn't an option. For the ones who insist on speaking in nonsensical buzzwords, a stout verbal stick is needed before the carrot can be utilized.
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