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Council jargon is off the agenda

by: Garry Pierrepont (19 March 2009)

Councils have been told to ditch jargon in the latest guidelines from the Local Government Association.

Phrases such as "predictors of beaconicity" (*) and "lowlights" are among "council speak" that are now off the agenda.

It is ironic that the same group (councils) who can't deal with the use of the apostrophe manage to come up with nonsensical phrases that most plain speaking people can't comprehend.

Around 100 words and phrases are on the banned list, including "coterminous" (in agreement), "seedbed" (idea) and "early win" (success).

The purpose of the ban is to improve communication with the public. The Plain English Campaign welcomed the opportunity for councils to be clearer. Spokeswoman Marie Clair said: "This list is not saying people are not intelligent enough or able enough to understand. It is the context in which words are used that makes them gobbledegook."

* saying which councils will do best.

Views: 1650

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