Sunday, May 6, 2012

It's a subset, folks

Kelly had a great post recently about overused and misused words. She had to know she was ringing my bell when she wrote it. I am always on the lookout for those words and phrases that the media and people in the workplace just can't stay away from.

In my world right now, by far the most overused phrase is "reach out."  I do not go one day without hearing it or reading it in an e-mail. Nobody calls me, they reach out to me. It's hilarious.

And the media folks are just as bad. You don't have to listen to the talking heads very long before they tell you that they "reached out to so-and-so but he was unavailable." 

As I told Kelly when I commented on her post, a big up and comer now is "subset."  You might remember learning about sets and subsets when you took math. Now it's all the rage in the office with people talking about subsets of people who do this or that, subsets of information, subsets of all kinds of things.

Just in case you didn't know, there is as big subset of folks out there now who just love to hear themselves say the word subset. Listen and you'll see -- or hear.


Kelly said...

One you mentioned at my blog was using the word "issues" instead of "problems". I have to admit I'm guilty there. I guess I feel it doesn't sound as serious or negative as the word problem - easier to deal with, maybe.

LaneyD said...

Good grief, Bob. That is so funny because a few of us girls laugh at the "reach out" phrase that is rampant in communication today. I cannot stand it.........just like the "You of A". Ha ha.

quid said...

Funny post! I also have picked up on the overuse of "have a conversation about that".... every topic in the media; they say - "we need to have a conversation about that".

Of course, that's better than people insisting on using the word "conversate" as a verb. It's not a verb, people!

quid, stickler for words

Bob said...

Don't even get me started on making nouns verbs, e.g. "parenting." AGGHHH!!!