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The "Annoying Phrase" Thread

Peacoat

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By the time I hear something that annoys me, it has become established in usage. For the past year or so, I have been hearing "price point" when the speaker actually means the "price" of something. Price point is a point on a scale of possible prices for a product, whereas price is the monetary value of a good or service. I guess the speaker thinks it sounds more official to use a fancier term for a simple word.
 
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Related to that, has anybody really ever been persuaded to purchase a product because its "price point" is $39.99 and not the outrageous amount of 40 bucks?
I've seen car dealers with newspaper ads where every vehicle is priced at $XX999.95. This foolishness alone makes me less, not more likely to deal with them.

I agree - personally, it drives me nuts. But true or not, there are decades of surveys and behavioral studies that argue it genuinely works as people view those items as less expensive than the slightly higher rounded number and will, thus, buy more of whatever it is if it is priced right below a round number with a higher price "handle."

I have argued in pricing meetings for years that it makes the company look sleazy / low rent - like we are trying to trick the customer (and think they are stupid), but the market-research guys would always come in with their evidence and almost always win the day.

I think it's a short-term or narrow view - to wit, we get some more sales, but it misses the bigger picture as it's just another thing that adds up (in a not positive way) to how customers view your company and your products.
 
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Peacoat

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On NPR, most of the interviewees, at the end of the interview, and in response to the interviewer saying, "Thank you," will respond by saying, "Thank you," instead of saying "you're welcome." Or if the interview was mutually beneficial, they could say, "You are certainly welcome; thank you for having me."

Of course this isn't the only thing I find annoying on NPR.
 
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tonyb

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^^^^^
Yeah, I don’t tune in nearly as frequently as I once did, although I don’t know if it’s that they’ve slipped or that I’ve changed. A bit of both, I suppose.

I was torn between laughing and screaming one day recently when an announcer on a local NPR affiliate uttered an almost incredibly awkward string of copy, written so as to say “people experiencing homelessness” rather than “homeless people” or just “the homeless.”

It was apparent the directive came from on high.

So, in the spirit of same, I am no longer an old bald white guy. I’m a person experiencing seniority, and a person experiencing alopecia, and a person experiencing paleness, and a person experiencing maleness.
 

LizzieMaine

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In every book on broadcast technique published when radio was a living, breathing thing as opposed to the post-media-consolidation zombie that it now is, announcers were specifically warned against thanking speakers for their comments, because it sounded trite and meaningless. They were advised to simply say "you've heard so and so, speaking on such and such a topic." Then give the system cue and get off the air, simple as that. No false geniality, please.

Using the passive voice in news copy was considered a mortal sin until the lawyers, "programming consultants," and marketing experts took over the business.
 

tonyb

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Passive voice has its place, which is generally to put the emphasis on the object rather than the subject.

But yeah, it’s otherwise best avoided — it’s just plain wordy and potentially confusing.

I’d wager that most folks couldn’t tell you just what passive voice is. So here goes: In passive voice, the subject of the sentence is acted on by the verb. The “mark of passive voice” is some form of the verb “to be” followed a past or past participle.

Easy example ...

Active voice: The dog bit the man.
Passive voice: The man was bitten by the dog.
 
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Nobert

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The most recent buzzword sticking in my craw: Makerspace.

I'm all in favor of the concept, I was just reading about a cooperative that sets up space and equipment for various craftspeople and such and it sounded great. But it's a workshop, for pity's sake. We've been calling it that for eons, it's a good term, leave it.

It rankles because it takes a page from the techie manual of recent decades: make up a term for something that already exists and pretend you've invented something unprecedented because you came up with the video-game version. It all seems to fall into line with that "disruptive" nonsense that I'm always hearing about.
 

tonyb

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The most recent buzzword sticking in my craw: Makerspace.

I'm all in favor of the concept, I was just reading about a cooperative that sets up space and equipment for various craftspeople and such and it sounded great. But it's a workshop, for pity's sake. We've been calling it that for eons, it's a good term, leave it.

It rankles because it takes a page from the techie manual of recent decades: make up a term for something that already exists and pretend you've invented something unprecedented because you came up with the video-game version. It all seems to fall into line with that "disruptive" nonsense that I'm always hearing about.

I believe your mention of “makerspace” is the first I’ve read or heard it. We can hope it’s the last, but that’s just me being wishful.
 

3fingers

One Too Many
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The most recent buzzword sticking in my craw: Makerspace.
That's right up there with another completely worn out buzzword, "artisanal", which is ridiculous enough on most any of the things it is used on but when I saw it on bologna I knew we had gone over the edge.
 

KILO NOVEMBER

Practically Family
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I don't read "The New Yorker", but every now and then I see one of the cartoons. One that stuck in my mind shows a waiter and a customer seated at at table. The customer says, "Oh, bring me anything, so long as it's artisanal."
 

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