I admit, I am a petty man. That said, there are certain words and expression used by the media that absolutely drive me crazy. Somehow, these words come into vogue and then are found in all types of discourse. One annoying word I wrote about in the past was “vetting.” That word became popular when Sarah Palin was nominated as the vice presidential candidate for the Republican Party. Suddenly, everyone was talking about vetting this and vetting that. (Check out this post from 2011.) In 2017, we’re still busy vetting, but this time it is refugees, not vice presidential candidates.
Today, there are several words used frequently by the new media that I find annoying. They also seem hollow to me. Here’s the current list:
- Optics – Used to reference how things look from a political perspective. Here’s an article from the New York Times about “optics” becoming a buzzword.
- Unpack – As in, let’s take a moment to “unpack’ that idea. Really? You unpack luggage, not ideas.
- Double Down – As in, President Trump has doubled down on his statements regarding race.
- Hacks – What the hack is up with people calling everything a hack? A hack can be a tip or a clever solution.
- Pivot – Everyone is talking about making a pivot? Is that the same thing as changing direction? I have a client organization that currently describes itself as making a pivot.
What current buzzwords drive you crazy? Please share. Let me know that I’m not alone in the world. As they like to say on CNN, “Let’s discuss.” I find that annoying as well.