Never to be seen again
We have all witnessed it, or maybe even done it ourselves. It’s that awkward situation where somebody in a group of people makes a joke, pun, or just a smartarse remark, then someone else tries to follow suit or top it and just falls short or fails miserably.
There follows a brief but heavy silence, a shuffling of feet perhaps, and begrudging noises that in no way pass for laughter, before the conversation quickly moves on.
It’s like that with the term Megxit, a smart play on Brexit obviously and one which The Bug’s media team believe was originally used in the UK tabloid The Sun following last week’s announcement by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan that they were walking away from the royal spotlight or at least seeking a smaller, softer, and generally less harsh spotlight.
The Sun ran it on its Thursday front page, but so too did the New York Post but given the time difference we give the UK fishwrapper the credit. Or perhaps great minds think alike.
Nevertheless, three days later Brisbane’s Sunday Mail tried its own version (pictured) which didn’t quite hit the spot.
Like the term Brexit which spread quickly, just about every media outlet in the world is now using the term Megxit so we’re not sure the Sunday Mail’s effort will be seen again.
Eye of the beholder
Just last month The Bug’s media analysis team examined the use of pejorative adjectives in stories about government spending, with reference to a story in The Courier-Mail concerning the “eye-watering” cost of fitting out the new Brisbane digs of the Australian Taxation Office (pictured).
This week the Courier was at it again, with a story about the engagement by the Queensland Government of former South Australian premier Jay Weatherill to lead a review of gas royalty payments.
The paper told its readers that the review was going to cost “an eye-watering $100,000” (pictured below).
Is it value for money? Who would know because the story was not clear on whether the $100k was the total cost of the review, in which case it presumably would also cover other salaries and resources, or if it were the cost to contract Mr Weatherill alone.
Still, it seems any figure spent by any arm of any government these days is “eye-watering” as far as the Brisbane tabloid is concerned.
Our media team thinks it a tacky and lazy label to apply willy-nilly, and readers could rightfully argue they should expect more from a paper for which they are asked to pay an eye-watering $1.90 each day.
Get the word right!
Just the other day, The Bug had a go at The Courier-Mail over a too-smart-by-half heading that tried for genius and ended up with gormless goofy.
From the same edition of the paper, we spotted this sports headline at right.
We’re not exactly sure what Sam denied the sceptics.
A sub who understands words and their meanings would probably have gone for “defies”.