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words to avoid

I’m passing along this post from Christopher Witt entited “Words to Avoid.”  It’s a good thought-starter for those of us who speak for a living.


Words to Avoid

I always love lists of overused, trite, important-sounding words. The list from Lake Superior State University (found here) holds these words (rightly) up to ridicule:

  1. Shovel-Ready
  2. Transparent/Transparency
  3. Czar
  4. Tweet
  5. App
  6. Friend as a verb
  7. Teachable moment
  8. In these economic times….
  9. Stimulus
  10. Toxic assets
  11. Too big to fail
  12. Bromance
  13. Chillaxin’
  14. Obama-prefix or roots

My least favorite phrase — it’s been around a long time — is “to make a long story short.” I appreciate the concept, but in my experience people who use the phrase are merely pausing in the middle of a boring recitation to catch their breaths. They then continue making a long story longer.

What phrase or word irks, irritates, or rankles you?