[Ads-l] Talent

Barretts Mail mail.barretts at GMAIL.COM
Fri Jul 27 16:55:29 UTC 2018

I will take VS’s split hair and sever it further. 

Probably unrelated, Min Jin Lee uses this word in her “Pachinko”.

https://tinyurl.com/ybga5fn3 <https://tinyurl.com/ybga5fn3>
“So is the singer really a famous talent?” Yangjin asked.

The problem here is that タレント (tarento) is the normal word for “celebrity” in Japanese, and she uses the word “celebrity” (shortly thereafter, IIRC):

https://tinyurl.com/yby94h63 <https://tinyurl.com/yby94h63>
“Is he really a celebrity?"

In English, “talent” is ordinarily used as a non-count noun with the meaning of celebrity, which makes it difficult for native Japanese speakers to get the correct usage. This non-count usage seems to be what DG and VS are citing. That to me strikes me as normal. In contrast, AF appears to be giving count noun usage ('"talent" for any camera-facing staff member'), and the OED citation is using the count noun usage, which both strike me as jargon.

Non-jargon count usage is nevertheless common. Here are two citations I easily found. However, I read these as being different from “on-air talent” or “celebrity" in that these seem to mean “an undiscovered person of talent”.

https://tinyurl.com/y93amsml <https://tinyurl.com/y93amsml>
She's a talent that we first saw at one of our ID camps.

https://tinyurl.com/y78e3blj <https://tinyurl.com/y78e3blj>
but her growing list of credits as a director shows that she’s a talent to keep track of

Finally, here’s an example that appears to muddy the waters, but the “a threat” portion might be having an effect.

https://tribuna.com/manutd/en/news/1779632/ <https://tribuna.com/manutd/en/news/1779632/>
Ryan Giggs on Marcus Rashford: “He’s a threat, he’s a talent, but one thing I would say is that when he’s not scoring he needs to mix his game up a little bit.

Benjamin Barrett
Formerly of Seattle, WA

> On 27 Jul 2018, at 09:36, Dan Goncharoff <thegonch at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> In banking, "talent" correlates with the "front office", which "faces"
> clients. Increasingly, however, it also refers to those working on digital
> client-facing technology, even though they might never meet a client
> directly.
> On Fri, Jul 27, 2018, 12:13 PM Alice Faber <afaber at panix.com> wrote:
>> On 7/27/18 8:43 AM, victor steinbok wrote:
>>> I might be splitting hairs but I've been wondering if the use of talent
>> in
>>> "on-air talent" has evolved/narrowed well beyond the OED Talent III.6.d.
>>> definition and needs its own entry, something like "high-profile
>> employees
>>> or recruits (collectively or individually)". It's also always collective
>>> and excludes administrative/executive. Certainly needs updated examples.
>>> I'm looking at this piece https://goo.gl/tWCLgq and here are the
>> relevant
>>> lines
>>> "Guilfoyle called female on-air talent at Fox News in the summer of 2016
>>> and asked them to make supportive statements about Ailes publicly,
>> sources
>>> said." (6.d.)
>>> "Sources said 21st Century Fox prefers that problematic employees retire
>> or
>>> resign rather than be terminated ― the company has taken this approach
>> with
>>> Fox News talent and executives in the past, as well as with Guilfoyle,
>> who
>>> was not formally terminated. This method gives talent and executives a
>>> quieter way to exit and the network avoids a contentious departure." (Not
>>> 6.d.)
>>> I've heard similar use in tech start-ups HR context, so it's not limited
>> to
>>> broadcasting/entertainment industry.
>> My cousin, whose first career as a sportscaster ended some 25 years ago,
>> used to use "talent" for any camera-facing staff member.
>>> VS-)
>>> OED entry
>>> d. Talent as embodied in the talented; sometimes approaching or passing
>>> into the sense: Persons of talent or ability collectively; as singular, a
>>> person of talent. By the sporting press, applied to backers of horses, as
>>> distinguished from the 'layers' or bookmakers, the implication being that
>>> those whose investments make a horse a 'favourite' are supposed to be
>> 'the
>>> clever ones'.
>>> (Administration of) All the Talents (English History), an ironical
>>> appellation of the Ministry of Lord Grenville, 1806–7, implying that it
>>> combined in its members all the talents.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list