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6 Min English: Jargon  

2012-08-04 03:26:59|  分类: ★KERISA |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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If you got a letter saying that local officials 'wish to engage you as a stakeholder', who could blame you if you thought it was a marriage proposal or even an offer to employ you as a barbecue chef?! In this week's programme we find out about an attempt at jargon-busting - getting rid of jargon.

Question:
Which British Prime Minister became known as 'Jack the Jargon Killer' because he wanted officials to stop using jargon?
a) Tony Blair
b) Winston Churchill or
c) Robert Peel

Do a bit of glossing, play in few inserts and run a few ideas past you - These are all Jargon. What is Jargon?
'Jargon' is a noun that we use for specific groups of words and expressions.
They're only used by people in special or technical situations because they are the only people who really understand

So, for example, 'glossing'…
'glossing' basically means 'explaining'. So really the only people who what glossing means are people who teach English over the radio. So 'glossing' is an example of 'jargon'.

Recently officials were asked to stop using all the jargon that was written on a list. It contained one hundred different words and expressions – all jargon that people didn't understand unless they worked with government
officials, for example.

What does 'flagged up' mean?
Answer:
If you 'flag something up', you really want to draw attention to it, you want
people to notice it, so you 'flag it up' – it's a phrasal verb.

In England, what are 'councils'?
Answer:
'Councils' are a form of local government - so 'councillors' are local politicians
who people vote for. And elected councillors make decisions about things like new local buildings and roads.


councillors: members of councils who people have elected or voted for to make decisions about what happens in their area


Three pieces of jargon which they found on that list:

1. 'stakeholder engagement'?
2. 'A multiagency approach'
3. 'a civic amenity site'
     Amenity: pleasantness resulting from agreeable conditions
These have all been flagged up as some of the worst examples of jargon used by councils and public bodies…
What do these phrases mean to you? They mean nothing to me so lets guess I can't be bothered to google.

There times when jargon is useful?
For instance if you don't want other people to understand what you're saying –
but then that's not very nice because it could mean that they don't get really
important information. For example, people can't complain about the building
of a new civic amenity site if they don't know whether it's a good or a bad thing.

but....
In the end, we embrace jargon, don't we? I mean, jargon is the vernacular, isn't it? And we love being in the know.
we get used it, we begin to like it and we even start using it. We feel part of a special group of people who understand and use it.

'Vernacular' - means that it's almost slang – very informal language that's only used by people who do a particular type of work.


Question Answer =   Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill loved the English language and he was a very great speaker so maybe he didn't like jargon.
He didn't like things like 'the receipt of your communication is hereby acknowledged with thanks' -
Which means - 
Thanks for your letter!



Vocabulary from the programme

stake-holder engagement
speaking to, liaising with and getting the attention of people or organisations that have an interest in and are important to a specific project

a civic amenity site
a place which is used by the general public

a rubbish tip
a place where dirt, refuse and things that people no longer need are left

shorthand
a quick way to write, say or do something


Business English Jargon:

actionable [adj.]

Capable of being acted on or completed in the near future. "Which items on our list are actionable in the next quarter?" 

at the end of the day

Based on the frequency with which they use the phrase, it would seem that members of senior management are required by law to begin every third sentence with "at the end of the day," a phrase similar in meaning to "when all is said and done." For instance, your favorite CEO might say, "At the end of the day, it's our people that make the difference." 

bandwidth [n.]

Plan your work well lest ye run out of "bandwidth," or physical, mental or emotional capacity.

"....I just don't have the bandwidth to handle this at the minute," meaning "I don't have the manpower or ability to handle this at the moment."

best practices [n.]

Another widely used term promulgated by the arch-demons of business - management consultants - "best practices" is used to describe the "best" techniques or methods in use in a company, field, or industry. Unfortunately, companies often confuse latest or trendiest with best, and the best practices of one era are soon superseded by the ever-more-ludicrous fads of the next.

boil the ocean [v. phrase]

Clearly the least efficient way to produce a pile of salt. If a member of the corporate industry suggests you are trying to "boil the ocean," he or she thinks you are doing something incredibly inefficiently. It's time to prepare your resume.

bring to the table [v. phrase]

Refers to what one offers or provides, especially in negotiations. Personally, I bring a fork.

core competencies [n.]

Simply put, it means "what the company does best." When a company focuses on its core competencies, it gets back to basics.

critical path [n.]

A sequence of events where a slip in any one activity generates a slip in the overall schedule. Used extensively in the exciting world of project management. Not to be confused with "criminal path," which is a sequence of events that leads to jail

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