The Tragic Fall of Non-Revenue-Generating Corporate Entities

I'm still getting settled back in town, so I thought I'd share with you this afternoon the lastest screed from Pulp's resident wing man, John DeGroot. This one regards the slogan contest mentioned below. Here goes:

Death of English

The august leaders of Florida’s fastest-shrinking newspaper are seeking slogans and/or logos to reflect what they call “the Transformative Change process presently underway at the Sun-Sentinel Company.”

To which I say: WHO-WAH!

And in case they don’t understand the contest, the august leaders spelled it out for their worker bees, noting “Ideas submitted should relate to the concept of change, sense of urgency, etc.”

In others words, not change that’s languid, gradual, gentle, etc.

But shock-and-awe change up the

ass!

Fair enough.

And certainly an understandable concept for a newspaper that lost 10% of its readership in six months.

However.

What we just may have here is endemic of a cruel and startling truth, which is: The newspaper’s august leaders don’t know Jack Shit about the English language.”

Allow me to break it down for you with my 10-pound volume of “The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language.”

Thusly:

TRANSFORMATIVE is the adjective form of the verb TRANSFORM which means “to change markedly the appearance or form” of a noun

While CHANGE is a noun for “the act, process, or result of altering or modifying.”.

Are you still with me?

Because the august leaders of the Sun-Sentinel obviously have no idea they’ve asked their employees to create slogans, or logos that capture the idea of --- ready? – Changing Change. Or Changeable Change. Or Change Changing. And so on.

Like Wet Water. Or Stinking Stench. Or Downward Descent. And so on.

Get it?

Because the Sun-Sentinel don’t.

As a grateful refugee from the Decline and Fall of Basic Journalism at the Tribune Company’s former corporate cash cow, I can remember when the newspaper began its downward descent into linguistic hell.

It happened around the time the current Executive Editor began his upward ascent when the language abusers up in Chicago came up with a new description for the Editorial Department, which was:

“Non-Revenue-Generating Corporate Entity.”

Which, translated, meant the assholes writing and editing “the product” were a negative line item – and thus a profit-wise downer.

No matter.

Because, language-wise, things became even worse.

For explain, according to Tribune-ese:

Reporters became known as “Information Gatherers.”

While editors were labeled “Information Processors.”

I feces you not!

Anyhow, that’s how it all began.

And also how and why it was only a matter of time before the Sun-Sentinel because “South Florida’s Leading Source for Information.”

In other words, people stopped talking about “stories” and began talking about publishing “information.”

Or course, a story versus information is like Slaughterhouse Five versus the phone book.

Which is a whole other thing the Sun-Sentinel’s august leaders fail to grasp in their quest for Transformative Change and Informative Information.


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