Professional Language

Greetings from a conference on social medical research, held at the Hellenic Banquet Hall in Ottawa. Sitting here listening to stuffed suit after stuffed suit give presentations, I am struck with a singular observation: professional language has once more devolved.

I remember back in the late 80s, when I was working part-time in the offices of a global head hunting company, noticing for the first time the banality and anti-intellectualism of business speak. As was pointed out in The Simpsons, words like “paradigm” and “inputs” are used by dumb corporate types to make themselves look smarter. Add to that list terms like “touch base” and the evolution of nouns into verbs (eg “party” and “network”).

Lately, I’ve noticed a new entrant: the word “piece”. I keep hearing mention of “the economics piece”, “your piece”, “my piece”, “the political piece”, “the budgetary piece”, yadda yadda.

Cripes, people, find a new word already!