A Guide to the Use and Abuse of Clichés

dailyfig.figment-cliche1When you dub something as a best-kept-secret, you expose it—it’s no longer a secret
‘…lexicographer and linguistics researcher Orin Hargraves embarks on a quest to empower you to “proceed with the confidence that you have made peace with clichés through greater understanding and that you have established a relationship with them that will serve your interests when you write and speak.”

‘Nearly all judgments about what constitutes a cliché have traditionally relied on consensus: if enough people think a form of words is overused, or if a person who is perceived as having some authority about language declares such a thing, then the word or phrase becomes a cliché. The result of this haphazard process is that many phrases are designated clichés without there being evidence of their frequent use. That is, infrequently used words and phrases may be deemed clichés, simply because a large number of people, or a small number of influential people, find them annoying or designate them as clichés for some other reason… But they are never annoying in equal measure, to the same people, in the same contexts, and for the same reasons….’

Amazon Sends Letter, Blogosphere Goes Meh
‘Over the past few hours I have been searching for and collecting some of the more colorful and more thoughtful responses. I do not have them all (Mike Shatzkin and David Streitfeld, to name a couple absent names), but the pundits I cite below tended to be the most shared on Facebook, twitter, etc.

‘Many questioned whether they should get involved, or even if Amazon should have sent the letter at all. When I reported on the letter, I mostly filtered my opinion out of the post and tried to simply summarize the contents. Others reacted in a less neutral tone, including John Scalzi, who tweeted:

“‘Also, on an unrelated note — Jesus, Amazon: Releasing this on a SATURDAY? Do you have a headless chicken running your PR strategy?

— John Scalzi (@scalzi) August 9, 2014″…’

Enabling Copyright Theft on a Global Scale
If Pinterest pins are illegal, why do artists, photographers, and copyright holders pin their works?

‘Pinterest is enabling copyright theft on a global scale and doing immeasurable damage to artists, photographers, and copyright holders all over the world.

‘When you “pin” an image on Pinterest, here’s what happens.
Pinterest makes an exact copy of the pinned image, stores it on Pinterest.com, and then provides a link back to the source image on the original website.

‘When pinning images, Pinterest users are under the impression that what they’re doing is a good thing. They’re introducing the Pinterest community to a new image and potentially driving traffic back to the original website.
Is that a good thing? Maybe. Does that make it legal? Absolutely not.

‘Just because an activity is perceived as “good” doesn’t make it legal. After all, “good” is in the eye of the beholder. Pinterest and their users think that pinning is “good”. Millions of artists and photographers around the world disagree…’


About DigitalPlato

Poch is a Bookrix author and a freelance writer. He is a frequent contributor to TED Conversations.
This entry was posted in art, business and commerce, copyright, news, publishing, writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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