What is POFP?

Why do lawyers refer to long documents as briefs and
18-year olds as infants? Why do they use so much Latin when so few of their
clients are Ancient Romans? Is it a conspiracy?


Party of the First Part has the answers! Check out the Website for the
Legalese Hall of Shame; a glossary of legal words linked to Adam Freedman's
columns; tips on writing legal documents in plain English; and more!



Sunday, September 28, 2008

Straight Talk on Gobbledygook -- and Reform

Cheryl Stephens -- plain language guru -- has cleared up the original meaning of the word "gobbledygook."

The term was coined by Henry Maverick, but as Stephens points out:

Maverick said the bureaucratic style of writing reminded him of the turkeys who strutted around the yard making a lot of noise that ended in a pile of sputum on the ground. That sputum was the gobble-de-gook. Not the strut nor the song-- the spit and pus!

For more of Cheryl's wisdom, check out her terrific blog, Building Rapport. In particular, you'll see information about the Plain Language in Government Communications Act now pending in Congress. To heck with the bailout; urge your congressman to support that.

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