Time to hire some copy editors to deflate the copy?

Pardon my quibble, but I worked with words for several decades and hired and fired countless quibbling copy editors whose job it was to make sure just the right words were used and used sparingly.

At one time the phrase “inflatable balloon” would have been flagged as a redundancy. A balloon by definition is inflatable. Redundancies are common in English and often are used for emphasis, but usually they just waste words, such as aid and abet, skip over, totally destroy, electrocute to death.

But the phrase “inflatable balloon” was redundantly redundant in today’s Las Vegas newspaper story about the Independence Day parade in Summerlin. It appears five times. OK, one was a direct quote, so that might not count. Then there is “decked out in,” and couldn’t “putting them into storage” as easily have been “storing”?

Sorry, it is a hazard of one’s prior occupation to pick such nits. When you work with words, you want words to work.

Online cutline reads: “Jurassic Adventure’s 30-foot T-Rex inflatable balloon was a hit on the parade route. (Joshua Dahl/Las Vegas Review-Journal)”







5 comments on “Time to hire some copy editors to deflate the copy?

  1. Patrick says:

    Isn’t there a point at which a balloon is no longer inflateable?

    And I really think you’ve eaten yourself up enough over the RJ Thomas?

    You’re doing yourself no favors.

  2. Yeah, probably, but sometimes the old habits make it hard to resist tweaking the noses of the bean counters.

  3. Vernon Clayson says:

    Perhaps if the owner/s and editor/s cared for more than just getting a paper out each day.

  4. I was at that parade and here’s a photo I shot of the R-J marching with all its remaining employees:

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