I think I’m turning Journalese

The Newcastle Journal’s Graeme Whitfield is looking for additions to his online dictionary of journalese.

Suggestions so far include:

  • “‘swingeing’ – always used in harness with the word ‘cuts’. Journalists seem to think that it is better than just saying ‘large’.”
  • “‘probe’ – to the shame of some journalists, this has come to mean an investigation that involves either leaving the office or involves more than three phone calls.”
  • senior source – “do you know anyone in any organisation with this job title?” asks one commenter on the post.

My personal favourite is ‘revealed’ – things get revealed in the press all the time as if they were previously behind a magician’s cloak.

One commenter on the post suggests journalese is a sign of laziness – yes, sometimes I suppose it is, but occasionally clichés are clichés, because they’re the truest way to express something.

Now everyone can go and play journalese bingo across our site…

4 thoughts on “I think I’m turning Journalese

  1. Dave Colville

    Hmmmmmmmm………….what do councils keep their money in?
    Yes, ‘coffers’ of course and, naturally, when people are in an accident they are ‘rushed’ to hospital. I can’t wait for the story wherein a vicitim ambles along slowly to A&E.

    As for Laura’s ‘revealed’ observation, I love PA’s tendency to end the first par of stories with ‘it emerged today’ or ‘it has emerged’………what from? An egg?

  2. Graham Bates

    In a bid to boost this praiseworthy enterprise, he added, I cite shock new figures revealed today. Howzat!
    (How is that? Just the ticket? etc etc)

  3. Laura Oliver

    They just keep coming…

    In the Sun’s coverage this weekend of footballer Ashley Cole’s infidelity, Cole was reportedly ‘monstered’ by his mother-in-law and wife after spilling the beans.

    Monstered was in bold and CAPs so it must be a real word.

  4. Simon Burgess

    A favourite of the Super Soaraway Scum, when a Very Nasty Person is sent to prison, they are not ‘jailed’ but ‘caged’ (if they are a Really Very, Very Nasty Person ‘caged can be capitalised for extra emphasis).

    Observe yesterday’s leader:

    “A TERRORIST caged for life yesterday for plotting to behead a squaddie was sponging £20,352-a-year from the taxpayer.”

    Oh, and he was also ‘sponging’ rather than ‘claiming. Nice. 😎

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