FOLLOWING E Harvey’s letter on how American spelling is starting to oust English spelling, I would like to add some language gripes of my own.
A few years ago, BBC Radio 4 would have told us, for example: “The coming changes will free staff to be active elsewhere.” Now we would be told that the “upcoming changes will free up staff to be proactive elsewhere”.
Why? For no good reason.
Things used to be done “free”. Now they are done “for free”.
At the same time, anything vaguely memorable is “iconic” and every television programme, including Michael Portillo’s series about railway journeys, is referred to as a “show”. Mr Portillo has yet to dance about on a platform.
Nowadays, we never get into different “circumstances”. We get into a different “place”. This was taken into its illogical conclusion on Radio 4 recently when, after the problems of the protest outside St Paul’s, it was pointed out that “St Paul’s is now in a different place”.