New Software Helps Leverage the Paradigm

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Wed Jun 18 19:13:17 UTC 2003

> >...New York-based Deloitte Consulting admits it helped
> foster confusing,
> >indecipherable words like "synergy," "paradigm," and "extensible
> >repository," but now it has decided enough is enough.
> I'm impressed that they have actually admitted it!
> However, I think synergy, paradigm, bandwidth, touch base - and even
> leverage, are real words meaning real things.  The rest of the
> examples given I'll agree are pretty idecipherable and confusing.
> Just because a term/word may be overused, or used in meaningless
> situations, doesn't necessarily make the term/word incomprehensible
> altogether.

That's true, but business writing--especially marketing writing--is
abyssmally bad. These words are all overused and cliches. So overused in
fact, that in most business contexts they have lost all meaning except as a
code for generic "cool business stuff." (Actually, I see nothing wrong with
"touch base," so long as it is used in an informal context. I'd never use it
in formal business writing.)

Good writing avoids the use of cliches and overused words. There's a lot
more to good writing than just comprehensibility.

If a piece of software helps people avoid cliches, I'm all for it. That
said, I have my doubts about this software. I've seen these things before
and they've never worked well. The fact that it is free tells you something.
I'll bet its something the Deloitte programmers hobbyshopped on their own;
then the Deloitte marketing team found out about it and decided it would
make a good press release. If it really helped improve writing skills,
Deloitte would be charging hefty consulting fees for installation in
corporate computer systems.

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