berthahenson

Parliamentary parlance

In News Reports, Writing on May 15, 2012 at 12:48 am

I did a double take reading the Page 1 headline in ST today. You realise it can be read in so many ways: Wider Govt plan to help bridge wage gap. So is a “wider Government” planning to help bridge wage gap? Or is a “Govt plan” we talking about? If it is a wider Govt plan and the emphasis is on wider – then what are the new or more measures to help do so? Okay, I’m nit-picking here about the headline  but I realise why the it was so vague after reading the story.

I read it twice, trying to figure out what was new that would help to bridge the income gap. It was really just a reiteration of Government policy – everything and the kitchen sink thrown in.  No wonder the headline was just as vague!

There’s another habit that should really, really be kicked. It’s the way news articles reporting office-holders tend to “lean” to their side. There were a half  dozen or so “assurances” by Ng Eng Hen on the topic of SAF safety in ST. And he didn’t even use the word…The other wonderful word that keeps popping up is “explained”. I wish writers would just stick to plain ‘said’ and leave it to the reader to decide if what was said was really an explanation.

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