This site uses session cookies. These cookies do not record any personal information.

Even Dr Doolittle spoke plain English to the animals

Well-meaning American academics are taking us a step closer to the world of George Orwell's Animal Farm, but without the author's love for plain English. US academic editors of the new 'Journal for Animal Ethics' are calling for new "animal language" that avoids using traditional terms such as 'pet' and 'wild'. Their aim is to improve relationships between humans and the wider world of animals.

Plain English Campaign receives daily complaints from the public about gobbledygook language. Some feature the documents written by academics, or the jargon of science, that is transferred into our everyday lives in public information. But so far we have not received complaints about terms such as 'beast' or 'pest', from any animal, other than the highly intelligent species at the University of Illinois.

Chrissie Maher OBE, founder of Plain English Campaign says, "Many people worldwide are doing their best to bring about positive change for the more vulnerable, and that includes our family pets and animal life. But I'm not so sure that the cows at the end of our lane fully appreciate this political correctness. We need plain common sense and respect, not new labels."

The campaign's long established annual awards for the Golden Bulls of jargon and gobbledygook are now under consideration for renaming in fear that the title could over-inflate the egos of our four-legged friends.

Links to press coverage of this issue:

Copyright © 2019 Plain English Campaign. All Rights Reserved.