And then there's "passed," a squishy word for
"died" as in "Queen Elizabeth has passed."
My newest addition to the list of worn phrases is the ubiquitous "reaching out," a vague term that could mean emailing, snail-mailing, calling, texting or sending a direct message. Or knocking on the front door, hoping someone will
I thought I was the only one bugged by "reaching out" until I stumbled across the "Pain in the English" blog and a post titled "When did contacting someone become reaching out?"
It riled readers who commented:
>>> "There are two
legitimate uses of the phrase: offering help, and asking for help. I cringe when I see newscasters use it to mean 'We went to the house and pounded on the door but nobody answered.'"
>>> "A typical example was a call I received yesterday from the receptionist in a
dental office who said 'Nancy asked me to reach out to you to ask if they could change an appointment time.' Why didn't she simply ask if it would be possible to change the time?"
>>> "I have recently received a number of emails where the phrase 'Thank you for
reaching out to ___' is used instead of what I would expect to be the normal expression 'Thank you for contacting ___.'"
>>> "It's bad, and getting worse. Recently, a work contact sent me a follow-up email with this phrase: '… I'm reaching back out…'. As if the
first 'reach out' wasn't bad enough."
>>> "Political correctness was probably the mother of this, one of the dumbest phrases yet. The FBI is going to 'reach out' to the second alleged witness in the Kavanaugh case? Reach out? That was the official announcement.
From my many years of experience the FBI doesn't reach out. It interrogates, investigates, questions, digs, intimidates, et al. It never 'reaches out.'"
The Publicity Hound says:
Unless you're offering help, or asking for it, it's time to retire this one from your publicity materials and all other communication. Please.
P.S. Your thoughts?