LINGUIST List 13.3417

Mon Dec 23 2002

Disc: Next to Last Posting/Linguists & Advertising

Editor for this issue: Karen Milligan <>


  1. Michael A. Covington, Re: 13.3405, Disc: Linguists and Advertising

Message 1: Re: 13.3405, Disc: Linguists and Advertising

Date: Mon, 23 Dec 2002 00:13:43 -0500
From: Michael A. Covington <>
Subject: Re: 13.3405, Disc: Linguists and Advertising

In Linguist 13.3405, Jess Tauber writes:
> ...the offensiveness of this form of advertizing. But it is still a minor
> matter when bigger issues remain, such as on-site cultural and
> economic imperialism, large-scale criminal victimization (including
> from the sex-tourism trade), rampant disease, etc. ...

Of course, there is always a great deal more wrong with the world than
just linguistic misinformation. But this particular piece of
misinformation about language (1) falls into our special area of
expertise (which makes it our job rather than someone else's), and (2)
is a demonstrably false statement of *fact*, with no room for
controversy about morals or politics. That is why I think it is our
duty to call Ricoh to accountability for this one. Beyond contacting
Ricoh, has anyone tried contacting the general news media, such as
CNN? They might find it genuinely interesting to know that Ricoh's
depiction of an African language (or whatever it is) is seriously
inaccurate, and that even the most (physically or materially)
primitive cultures have very complex languages.
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