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Plain English

 

The language used by many businesses and organisations today still tends to favour
the writing style of its writers over the reading style of its readers.


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YOUR CHALLENGE: Not everyone is familiar with the Plain English Campaign (PEC). And yet, most of us have probably encountered its nemesis – gobbledygook! This is the term given to the often impenetrable language that government and other official bodies use in public forms and documents. But it isn’t just the public sector that can be guilty of testing its readers. The jargon and management-speak that pervades many business documents can be similarly mystifying.

OUR SERVICE: Today, organisations around the world have pledged to use plain English (or plain language). As ardent supporters, we are proud to offer our customers this specialism as part of our writing, editing and training services. The reason is simple: plain English makes documents quicker, easier, and usually shorter, to read. By using it in their documents, businesses can be confident of getting their messages across, saving time and money to boot.

 

Management jargon

Buzzword bingo

One company spent huge sums of money developing a pesticide, only to find that one of its staff had already discovered it. His report was so badly written that no-one finished reading it.

Plain English

Wordle - Plain English 3

In its first response to the Plain English Campaign, the British Government made immediate savings of £15m, simply by rewriting thousands of its forms. Today, it continues to reap the economic rewards.

Gobbledygook

image - government speak

Computer company Coleco attributed losses of $35m in just one quarter to its ‘unreadable’ instruction manuals which had led large numbers of customers to return their computers.


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