Friday, December 29, 2023

Big Tech Warns Writers Of Forbidden Words



A recent New York Post article said that Microsoft Word, in addition to spellcheck and grammar correction technology, now has a new tool to PC-correct writers — even when nothing is wrong with a particular word.

Once the dictators co-opt language and demand uniform thinking, we are doomed. Dictators are no longer just national leaders. They are major corporations, big tech, the news media, and any of our institutions or influential authorities. Who the hell is Microsoft to tell us which words to use, and by connection, which ideas to express or which views are deemed acceptable to share?

Words have specific meanings, regardless of how a word originated.  For each word uttered, it is done so with context. There is intention. And there is interpretation. Don’t judge a word so harshly; judge the intension behind its use, instead.

Here is an example. If a woman says of her female friend: “Oh, I love Claudia. That bitch has my back,” you would likely be fine with that, provided it was not said in church or in front of little kids. But if a guy yells at a woman for some perceived wrongdoing: “Get out of my way, you stupid, fuckin’ bitch,” you would say it was not so nice to say that, although depending on what happened before that verbal flare up, you may even say that you can’t blame him. In any event, bitch is in the dictionary and people know what they are saying when they use it. No need to ban the word. Just use it appropriately.

If there is a legitimate reason to say curse words, like asshole and fuck, we don’t need some censor telling us we are wrong. If there is a relevant need to say slurs, like spic or kike, then say the words. If there is a reason to say retarded or Indian or master, let the words flow unimpeded.

You may even ask what is the big deal about changing our words? Maybe people don’t mean to be insensitive and are happy to be told what to say and think? This tool can save them embarrassment. Maybe. Or, you can just think for yourself and hopefully know what is offensive and what isn’t.

Otherwise, you stop thinking and give into Microsoft’s demands to cease calling the guy who brings you mail the “postman” — or saying the big bedroom that you sleep in is the “master” bedroom. Yes, postman and master are on the naughty list now, banned to the scrap heaps of time as if you maliciously called someone the N-word. Even the word “insane” is frowned upon by Microsoft’s word-nanny system.

There seem to be no limits as to how far the woke extremists will go to corrupt and bastardize our language. Too many changes to be implemented in too quick of a time span is not only not necessary, but detrimental to how people communicate with one another.

Folks, plenty of writers, comedians, pundits, historians, and so many others cannot function effectively when they can’t access words that are in the dictionary, and that until now, were used for hundreds of years, without intended offense or even a perceived one.

We don’t need to change our language or talk in codes or PC-speak. Just be respectful, sincere, accurate, and intentional in what you say. How you say something is of great importance. 

Context and setting  — and common sense — should dictate your actions. Nothing else.


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Brian Feinblum should be followed on LinkedIn. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2023. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog, and El Chapo, a pug rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This award-winning blog has generated over 3.4 million pageviews. With 4,600+ posts over the past dozen years, it was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby  and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 years as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Todd Duncan, Susan RoAne, John C. Maxwell, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, Independent Book Publishers Association Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, APEX, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult:  



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