Talking Chairs
delete

A quick social media glossary

“After you read my blog, just ping me on chat.” Though many PR professionals speak fluent social media, some of our clients, executives, or audience members may not. Their experience with social media may not go beyond Facebook, so it may seem like everyone else is speaking a foreign language. Here is a quick guide to some common terms, which you can use a universal translator for social media. Blog — combine the words “Web” and “log,” and you get “blog.” A blog is a site published on the Internet consisting of discrete entries (called...
delete

Six ways PR pros and communicators can s...

At a recent happy hour for PR, marketing, and communications professionals, the talk turned to work matters. We all began sharing our triumphs, struggles, ideas and solutions. Factoring in staffing constraints, workloads, and sometimes-outlandish demands from clients and executives, communications professionals are universally overworked. Increasingly they’re being asked to do more with less. We began discussing ideas on how to gracefully say “no” to a project that simply can’t be taken on. Here are some ideas shared by the group, which PR Daily readers might...
delete

5 ways to trim the fat from your writing

Americans set their new year’s resolutions in a fairly predicable pattern. The same 10 resolutions are popular, year after year. Top of the list? Losing weight. While many writers, editors and PR professionals will be hitting the gym and lunching on salads in 2015, there is more than one type of weight to lose. This year, why not resolve to tighten your writing and eliminate extra words and redundant phrases? Here are a few ways to get started: 1. Use concise language and eliminate redundancies. Thomas Jefferson said, “The most valuable of all talents is that of never...
delete

9 sentences that need a hyphen

I’ve written many times about my dislike of the hyphen, the most tedious of all punctuation marks. Hyphens connect words, prefixes and suffixes and are generally used to avoid ambiguity. But hyphens often confuse matters. Unfortunately, a definitive collection of hyphenation rules does not exist. Rather, different style manuals and dictionaries prescribe different guidelines for its use. However, there are certain instances where the need for a hyphen is obvious. Below are nine sentences that need hyphens for clarity. Susan decided to resign her employment...
delete

8 great gifts for word lovers

It’s not too late to find that perfect holiday gift for the word nerd in your life, but what can you get the person who routinely quotes from “Eats Shoots and Leaves” and who argues with others whether they should use the serial comma? Here are eight ideas. 1. Literary action figures Even better than the “Star Wars” action figures we played with as kids, you can have Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and Edgar Allen Poe sit down to tea. These action figures even come with accessories. 2. An iPad with the browser set to ...
delete

“Then” vs. “than”...

Like many other PR Daily readers, certain writing errors annoy me. For example, I can’t stand the misuse of “comprise” and “compose, or using a hyphen when a dash is called for. I hate seeing the word “irregardless.” Over the last several months, I’ve noticed a very basic, obvious error with greater frequency. What is wrong with this sentence? The emergency medicine director said taller people with broad shoulders do need larger protective garments then the universally sized ones available. How about this one? It usually takes less...
delete

15 words to describe people

“It is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious.” This view professed by Oscar Wilde seems rather limiting, especially to the word connoisseurs who read PR Daily. People can be rather complex and so are the words to describe them. Below are 15 words to describe people. 1. Ascetic — a person who leads an austere, simple life, especially one who denies himself or herself material satisfaction or physical pleasure. Example: “I had always thought of Eve as an ascetic until I saw her at the monster truck show.” 2. Bon...
delete

32 alternatives to “a lot”

“A lot” is a piece of land, or so said many of my high school English teachers whenever anyone used “a lot” to describe an amount. Unfortunately, in much of the work we’re asked to edit, “a lot” is used…a lot. Here are a few examples of how the term is commonly used: “There will be a lot of drinking after work tonight.” “Our style guide does not appear to be used by a lot of people.” “I try not to ask for a lot of help from the IT Department.” “There’s not a lot we can do about the CEO’s use of run-on...