Category: language

  • Stupid Neologism of the Day

    People often use the verb “to impact” instead of “to affect” or the noun “impact” instead of “effect” because they can’t be bothered to remember the difference between affect and effect. One self-styled writer tweets, “Yep, now those words [affect, effect] are being replaced in the lexicon with things that aren’t confusing (re: impact). Language […]

  • Blind Strikes and Double Strikes

    Anne Reed writes at Deliberations about blind strikes: In a “blind strike” voir dire, both sides exercise their strikes simultaneously. If you get four strikes, you strike four jurors, without knowing (until it’s over) whether your opponent struck those same jurors too. All these years I’ve been using blind strikes without even knowing it. In […]

  • Welcome Language Fans

    Defending People has received lots of hits today from the Language Log. It’s a good match, I think; words are criminal-defense lawyers’ tools, and at Defending People we love words and are not shy about using them. We’re not even above making up a word, on occasion, when there isn’t already one that works. Criminal […]

  • Plea Plead Pleaded Pled? Please!

    My fellow blawgers: When a person admits her guilt in court, she does not plea guilty. She pleads guilty, entering a guilty plea. “Plead” is a verb. “Plea” is a noun. After a person has admitted his guilt in court, he has not plead (or “pleaed”) guilty. The past tense of “to plead” is “pleaded” […]