12 July 2011

John Rentoul’s The Banned List

If you don’t know about John Rentoul’s heroic, but probably forlorn, attempt on the pages of the Independent and on Twitter (@johnrentoul #bannedlist) to eliminate clichés in all their forms – you should.

The top 100 to avoid are here, then numbers 101-150, 151-160, 161-170, 171-180, 181-190, and The Banned List seems unlikely to stop there.

Western Independent’s first contribution is in at 188:
'Not a good look' applied to a policy, or anything other than apparel.
For an example look in the Spectator on 25 June:
Taking it away [child benefit from families in the higher tax bracket] was a small thing, but it suggested that the Tories belong to the sort of class that wouldn’t really miss an extra ten or 20 quid a week: not a good look.

John Rentoul announced today that The Banned List will be available in book form in October. It sounds like a Christmas present book – one bought by people who don’t usually buy books for people who don’t usually read them.
Perhaps we will find out what has happened to “existential”; ”gold-plated”, except for a thin coating of precious metal; and “on an industrial scale” except for industrial processes – and certainly not phone-hacking.  In the circumstances, I can't see "crowdsourcing" being outlawed ... 

191-195 now revealed.


An appetite-wetter from John Rentoul and 196-200.


The Book is available on Amazon! JR has an article out today justifying its existence, and there is now a website, inevitably called www.bannedlist.co.uk. In fact, this just leads to all the master’s blog posts on his pet subject, including the latest. Or is it his pet subject? The answer to this question may be no …

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