Blithering lingo

The witty Mr Peter York, writing in the Guardian on 3 January 2015 (presumably taken from his book "Authenticity is a Con", Biteback) berates the word "authentic": as he says, it tends to be used by people who have something to sell and, as I say, are looking for a fresh, reassuring way to lie about it.

If you spot it, look at the context - I'll bet it effectively means the very opposite of what's intended: think of that "authentic" native art you see in craft shops. A pink plastic pony has more authenticity and at least it's not pretending to be anything else - and probably really was made in a village in Thailand.

It's another example of a perfectly good word brought into disrepute by marketing people. Peter York cites some more: "journey", "spontaneity", "vibrant", and - oh spare me - "passionate".

I've written elsewhere about "stylish", as fraudulent, bland and lazy a word as you could ever have the misfortune to read. But I would now like to add "stunning" to that Rogues' Gallery: it's vacuous - use it and you're vacuous, too. "Perfect" - there's so much perfection around, everything else must have paled into zero by now. Oh, and "impact" is a shit verb, unless it refers to a wisdom (sic) tooth.

It's not only marketing people who carry the blame; sub-editors are at it, too. These are the same people who think they can make a sentence look interesting by just adding a ! (There's a reason why they were called screamers in the old type world!) Awesome!

I get quite dizzy on this high horse, you know. But someone's got to ride it.

PS "Savvy" - that's another. If you have any, you don't use it.

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