Holding back the tide
Posted January 23rd, 2012 by debritz
This post is brought to you by the television networks who insist on calling repeats "encores".
An encore is a short repeated item or an additional item at the end of a performance. When you just screen something again, it's a repeat.
Oh, and while we're at it:
1) There are no degrees of uniqueness, the word "unique" is unique. Something that is "almost unique" is rare or unusual. If it's unique it's one of a kind. It cannot be "very unique".
2) "Refute" is not a synonym for "deny". If you refute a claim, you prove it to be untrue, you don't just contradict it.
3) If somebody has drowned or has been electrocuted, they are dead. There are no exceptions to this rule.
4) Alternative and alternate don't mean the same thing.
Why are these things important? Because it dilutes our language if we misuse words with specific meanings, and our ability to communicate effectively and efficiently with each other suffers in the process.
We all slip up occasionally but when it comes to the examples above, too many people in the media are repeat offenders. Or, in their language, they like to provide encores of their ignorance.