“State-of-the-art technology” as another hackneyed term

No one boasts of their plain-vanilla software, their program that gets the job done and thank you ma’am. Everyone in articles brags about chrome-plated, futuristic, leading-edge whizbang that is the talk of the town. Magazines praise you and pick you for awards if you have dared state-of-the-art technology. Vendors splash the term around unstintingly.

Periodically I rant about purple prose, the clichés that riddle GC-speak (See my post of June 11, 2008: best practice, leader innovation, strategic and world class.). In the jargon of general counsel, other terms have been used so much they ring hollow. In this sad lot I also include with “state-of-the-art” the weary words “partnering,” “bet-the-company-litigation” and “proactive” (See my post of May 1, 2005: the dark side of partnering; Feb. 28, 2006: BTCL; and Sept. 17, 2006: proactive counseling.).

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