Unspeak the truth

Almost 10 years ago, Steven Poole published his book, Unspeak. The subject was the use and abuse of words. People think carefully with their use of words. Hidden meanings and politically-charged meanings can be hidden in the utterances. This can be true for the politician, journalist, PR hack or marketer. Seems obvious, doesn’t it?

What prompted this post was a certain furore over a certain large brewery finally laying claim to trying to pass off some products as local, craft offerings. This is getting attention elsewhere so there’s little new that I can add to this.

What caught my eye, however, was a particular comment used by said breweries PR team. So what somewhat starting statement? It was none other than “low-volume high-quality draught products” being used to describe their small batch trying to be crafty offerings.

If this is how they describe these beers, how then to they describe their mass-market product? Those familiar with the dark arts of Unspeak could read this as as tacit acknowledgement of their big-selling and category leading brands as “high-volume low-quality”.

Accidental and careless, perhaps. Dangerous and charged, indeed.

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