Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Words That Aren't Words
There are some words that aren't really words--they're collections of letters that spring up and don't really mean anything and certainly don't add anything no matter what we're speaking or writing about. Impactful is an example of this. It doesn't mean anything. It's just a poor version of the word impact which itself is used incorrectly as much or more as it is used correctly. What people are getting at when they use impactful and when they use impact incorrectly is that something has an affect or an influence. Well, if that's what you mean, say it--don't rely on inaccurate usage or made-up words. We're too intelligent a people to not write well and speak well for our readers, hearers, clients and customers, and ourselves.