The use of language...

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ina
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The use of language...

Post: # 104934Post ina »

Is it just me who thinks this a bit odd - why is everybody using the word "cascade" all of a sudden?

Just read some minutes of a top management meeting:

"The presentation slides... would be cascaded out to those present at the meeting."

Next paragraph:

"A brief message ... would be cascaded to staff and key stakeholders."

:? :? :?

We used to say "distribute" or something along those lines... Is that "new English"? Do I have to go back to school?
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Post: # 104942Post MKG »

It began some 20 years ago - an insidious attempt to co-opt the English language into the support of questionable business practice by fuzzying the edges of definitions. Now, you find it everywhere - particularly in the education field, which makes me so angry that I could almost say Golly (there - I did it). The one I particularly used to take the pee out of was "leveraging of synergies". Every time anyone said that to me, I would ask what they meant. Never got an answer. It's on a par with "thinking outside the box", "blue-sky conceptuality" and even Microsoft's "human/environmental interfaces" (windows for any normal person, but Billy thought we might get confused).

It's an attempt by people of limited mental abilities to convince the world that they know whereof they speak. Einstein, they hoped, might have said "Sh*t, guys, this space thing really is a bummer. Let's do stuff - whaddya think?".

You're right, Ina - it's a load of cr*p.

ina
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Post: # 104945Post ina »

:mrgreen: Good to know I'm not the only one!
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Post: # 104953Post hamster »

Ack, my job is translating all this guff into proper English. (I must admit, although it is deeply unprofessional, I do try wherever possible to rephrase sentences containing the word 'incentivise'.) So if you ever want a translation, I can oblige. :wink:

The one that cracks me up is that nobody can ever just talk about something: they have to 'sit down' and talk about it. More often than not 'around the table'. 'Yes, we'll sit down around the table and talk about that next week.' 'Yes, I sat down with him and talked through the slide pack.'

Oh, and 'bespoking'. Apparently the software industry turned it into a verb. But I heard someone use the phrase 'tailoring and bespoking' - what do they think tailors do???

To some extent, it is just an extension of what we do when we speak every day. It's part of human language to use euphemisms: we say 'passed on' instead of 'died', so why not 'reorganising' instead of 'sacking lots of people'? And less direct language use is a common way of indicating respect and distance, and hence maintaining expedient relationships, which is what business is, I suppose: consider a sliding scale of 'I was just wondering if you'd possibly be able to do x, if you don't mind?' to 'Could you do x for me, please?' to 'Do x.'

But irritatingly, most of them are just neologisms for neologisms' sake. As if using a new word (like 'agreeance' instead of 'agreement', or 'action' instead of, erm, 'do') automatically makes you innovative and exciting, yet frees you from actually having to be either. :roll:
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Post: # 104954Post John Headstrong »

I personally have not noticed the use of the word "cascade" but words do get trendy especially in IT and computing.

the ones that have got bugged by are:

"Leverage" and was once used "we must get more leverage on our mindshare bandwidth" which means we need to think about it more.

"bespoke" for a few years everything was bespoke and once at a meeting I had to shout "of course it is f**king bespoke, we made it, that is what we do"

there are others but I have blanked them from my mind for sanity reasons

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Post: # 104956Post circlecross »

somebody recently asked me to "cascade" to a group of friends that she was leaving her husband and shacking up with a younger fella. I replied "am I a waterfall?" So it passes over into "real life" aswell. It is a silly word to use.
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Post: # 104967Post mybarnconversion »

I see a great love of hierarchies in corporate life at the moment ... even more so than years ago when hierarchy was a lot more formal.

Words like cascade make the small minded fools who run most companies feel big and above other people - they can cascade down information to the minions beneath them...

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Post: # 105013Post Annpan »

I HATE the phrase "not fit for purpose"

It doesn't work, it's broken, it never worked, it is cr*p, we need to fix this... but no it is always "not fit for purpose" it sounds like a flippin' robot talking.
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Post: # 105056Post ina »

Brilliant, all your responses!

We have a lot of foreign colleagues - well, I'm one of them - and the newly arrived visitors (lots of them students) often seem a bit bamboozled by the language used in information that's being "cascaded" out to them... And then I try to translate. :roll:
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Post: # 105119Post lsm1066 »

What's wrong with "sent"?

I recently took part in a survey about instant messaging. Apparently, I don't have e-mail and internet software. What I actually have is an "e-mail/internet interface experience".

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Post: # 105162Post colhut »

Only last year I had a day long "Blue Sky" meeting.

I'd like to take this opportunity to push my own jargon. This started off as an IT office game, you have to come up with a new piece of jargon, weave it into a presentation and see if you could get any senior managers to use it. So, I present you with "Information transconductance" as in "we need better information transconductance throughout our workflow strategy" or "Information transconductance is at the core of our buisness paradigm". obviously all it means is to communicate, ironically the very thing all this jargon prevents :lol:
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Post: # 105179Post eccentric_emma »

colhut wrote:Only last year I had a day long "Blue Sky" meeting.

what on earth is a Blue Sky meeting?? When I worked in an office, we used to have 'Buzz sessions' which was basically a 5 minute morning briefing....I used to think the language used where i worked was nuts - but listening (reading) to some of the examples on here - bonkers!
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Post: # 105188Post Stonehead »

..........
Last edited by Stonehead on Tue Jun 24, 2008 1:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post: # 105204Post Wombat »

Mrs Wombat, Ah Stoney your a real class act! Loved the time we spent with you, Linda and the boys. I don't have any office buzz words cos last time I worked in an office people still used english. However my pet hates are the American buzz phrases from the sitcoms. " You know, like ' Whatever!' and " Its all good!' Subliminel messages that it o.k to be a jerk! Disrespectful to those around you and downright rude! To which I think I might have a ceremonial burning of a bratz doll!

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Post: # 105273Post Helsbells »

This doesnt really have anything to do with office buz words and jargon, but its something that really annoyed me...One one of the wierd channels I get now with a digi-box (citv3+1 or the like) There was a program on called "America's most smartest model"

What?? How can you have a most smartest. Surely the fact that they are the smartest means they are already smarter than everyone else. You cant have a most smartest!!

Its like saying the most best!

Made me ver cross.

Then later on on radio 4 I heard a radio presenter saying something like

"This is the uber most impressive event"

EH? Uber? meaning really or very in German? so the event was the very most impressive??
What?

Sorry for the rant

OOH also in the cinema yesterday there was an advert for an Indian resturant saying that they sold very good Quisine!

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