Monday, May 13, 2013

the problem with "problematic", and an apology

I was reading someone's post recently, and when I got to the word "problematic", I clicked away without finishing the sentence.

"Problematic" usually means "I can't identify the problem, but I suspect there is one, and if I'm right, someone will rant at me unless I stick in a pre-emptive 'problematic'." It's the first word I would put on a list of empty words loved by people who want to sound smarter than they are. If you know the problem, say so. If you don't, be brave enough to say you don't. Don't shilly-shally with space-fillers like "problematic".

I've used "problematic" in the past. I am truly sorry. It will not happen again.