Sunday, December 13, 2009

Editing PR Speak

Twice a year I help one of the trade magazines I freelance for gear up for the NAMM Show, which means I spend a few hours a day for about a month editing PR Speak out of press releases for the latest guitars, drums and gadgets hitting the market from the biggest instrument manufacturers in the industry.

That means twice a year I’m reminded why most journalists condescendingly call publicists and press release writers J-School Dropouts behind their backs.

Here are a few examples of adjectives that appear in just about every release I’ve edited in the past week that all PR representatives should strike from their vocabularies when describing their company’s products:

  • Noteworthy
  • Incredibly
  • Beautiful
  • Stunning
  • Gorgeous
  • Cutting-edge
  • Top-quality
  • State-of-the-art
  • Ingenious
  • Unprecedented
  • Best

Just the facts, please.

See, too this excerpt on writing press releases that insists they should be written in "news style" and "avoid the first person.

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