2008 banished words

The latest Lake Superior State University list of banished words has just come out. It’s compiled by students at the Michigan university and is a singular, er, unique, contribution to the war against overblown hyperbole and language abuse. After reading Colin Espiner’s latest on kiwiblog, I’ve just nominated “politics 101” for next year’s list.

A few of this year’s banished words and phrases:

PERFECT STORM – “Overused by the pundits on evening TV shows to mean just about any coincidence.” – Lynn Allen, Warren, Michigan.

POST 9/11 – “‘Our post-9/11 world,’ is used now, and probably used more, than AD, BC, or Y2K, time references. You’d think the United States didn’t have jet fighters, nuclear bombs, and secret agents, let alone electricity, ‘pre-9/11.'” – Chazz Miner, Midland, Michigan.

ORGANIC – Overused and misused to describe not only food, but computer products or human behavior, and often used when describing something as “natural,” says Crystal Giordano of Brooklyn, New York. Another advertising gimmick to make things sound better than they really are, according to Rick DeVan of Willoughby, Ohio, who said he has heard claims such as “My business is organic,” and computers having “organic software.”

SURGE – “‘Surge’ has become a reference to a military build-up. Give me the old days, when it referenced storms and electrical power.” – Michael F. Raczko, Swanton, Ohio.

IT IS WHAT IT IS – “This pointless phrase, uttered initially by athletes on the losing side of a contest, is making its way into general use. It accomplishes the dual feat of adding nothing to the conversation while also being phonetically and thematically redundant.” – Jeffrey Skrenes, St. Paul, Minnesota.

Haven’t heard that last one, but it probably won’t be long before it washes up on our shores.

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One Response to “2008 banished words”

  1. Sconehead Says:

    Could we please add ‘Vote…’ to this list?

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