News

Plain English campaign news articles

Bank of England jargon far too taxing

For decades now, we at Plain English Campaign have added our voice to those justifiably complaining about jargon in a number of areas. Financial jargon may well be at the top of the list of complaints we’ve received, and things don’t seem to be improving.

And with Brexit officially on the horizon (March/April has been mentioned) we really do need to know what is going on with the country’s banks and, in turn, our own finances.

Read more: Bank of England jargon far too taxing

Councils ignore plain English guidelines

You may recall recent Government guidelines that made plain English ‘mandatory for all of Gov.UK’. Well, it seems that ‘mandatory’ means different things to different councils.

A recent independent report looked closely at up to 100 pages on 191 local authority websites. The findings suggest that 82% of the information checked is ‘confusing readers by failing to use plain English’.

Read more: Councils ignore plain English guidelines

More beauty product nonsense

Have you ever bought a skin-care product after/despite hearing some impressive-sounding gobbledygook? The beauty product industry has seemingly always used hefty doses of waffle when marketing its creams, oils and ‘exfoliating’ gels.

But how many of the claims made about said products bear scrutiny? Unsurprisingly, very few.

Read more: More beauty product nonsense

2017 open courses

  • Plain English course 21 September 2017, London

Last few places remaining on this course. Book now to get £50 off each place. Further discounts available to corporate members.

  • Report writing course 26 September, London

This course is only run twice a year and we have only a few places remaining.

For these offers, call Terri Schabel on: 01663 744409 for more details or email her at terri.schabel@plainenglish.co.uk

We voted 'Leave' – what now?

The votes are counted and the UK has voted out of the European Union. Scaremongering campaigns and spin aside, what does the decision actually mean?
 
Here’s a plain English guide to some key issues.
 

Read more: We voted 'Leave' – what now?

Web deceit gets trickier

We’ve already highlighted some of the dodgy techniques websites use to con customers.

Shamefully, not only have many websites continued to use them (and, in some cases, pass them off as perfectly OK), they’ve started to use even sneakier programs.

Read more: Web deceit gets trickier

SATS chaos

You know all about the SATS controversy. Teacher frustration, parent demonstrations, child misery.

We’ve had plenty of contact from teachers and irate parents in particular. And the evidence – in this case the actual SATS questions, as sent in to us – suggest they’ve got plenty of reason to be upset.

Read more: SATS chaos

Government plain English woe

Back in 2014, the Government’s Digital Service brought in ‘mandatory’ guidelines for ‘writing and managing content’. In particular, that meant keeping to plain English principles.
 
Or, in their own words, from the ‘Writing for GOV.UK’ guide: “Plain English is mandatory for all of GOV.UK. One of the parts most people pick up on is the plain English (or words to avoid) list. This isn’t just a list of words to avoid. Plain English is the whole ethos of GOV.UK: it’s a way of writing.”
 

Read more: Government plain English woe

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