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From this morning's LanguageLog. LOL.

Walk Bettinger, the president and chief operating office of the Charles Schwab brokerage, sent out a personally signed message to customers on August 18 in which the following was the main content:

On August 16, you may have experienced difficulty accessing Schwab online or through our phone centers as a result of our systems slowdown. We want to apologize and let you know what happened.

In the process of expanding system capacity earlier that morning, a systems slowdown occurred. As a result, if you tried to access Schwab online or via the phone, you may have experienced slower-than-normal service, or in some cases, may have been unable to access our services at all.


So let me summarize this for Language Log readers, in case you didn't get that. There was a systems slowdown, you see, and the explanation turns out to be that while system capacity was being expanded a systems slowdown occurred, with the result that people found (indeed, you yourself may have found) that the systems slowed down. So that's the news from the Department of Redundancy Department at Charles Schwab. It makes you wonder about the people who draft letters for chief operating officers, doesn't it?
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So let me summarize this for Language Log readers, in case you didn't get that. There was a systems slowdown, you see, and the explanation turns out to be that while system capacity was being expanded a systems slowdown occurred, with the result that people found (indeed, you yourself may have found) that the systems slowed down. So that's the news from the Department of Redundancy Department at Charles Schwab. It makes you wonder about the people who draft letters for chief operating officers, doesn't it? <?i>


I don't find it redundant, just poorly written because of the paucity of real information. They're intending to say that in case you had access problems, it was because of a systems slowdown, and the systems slowdown occurred, ironically, as an unintended and temporary consequence of the process necessary in improving our system.

(I don't understand why they didn't make the changes at night, to avoid a potential systems slowdown!)
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I don't find it redundant, just poorly written because of the paucity of real information. They're intending to say that in case you had access problems, it was because of a systems slowdown, and the systems slowdown occurred, ironically, as an unintended and temporary consequence of the process necessary in improving our system.

(I don't understand why they didn't make the changes at night, to avoid a potential systems slowdown!)


I agree that the way to have avoided problems - not just a slowdown - would have been to make the changes at night or some other more convenient time.

I disagree, however, that this was not redundant. In my opinion, it was. The reason may have been because it was poorly written - which was the final point made in the Language Log post - but the result was still redundant.

And if I say any more about this, I will be engaging in redundant redundancy, or put another way, saying the same thing in different ways.
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I disagree, however, that this was not redundant. In my opinion, it was.


I disagree with your (redundant) disagreement! ;-)

Basically, they said: If you experienced a slowdown, it's because we had a slowdown due to the systems change we were in the midst of working on. It's needlessly REPETITIVE, which is not necessarily REDUNDANT. They could/should have chosen a different word or phrase in introducing the reason for the slowdown.

I come across so many truly horrifyingly written items by people who should know better that I can't get very exercised about this one. Though that's just my one-woman opinion.


sheila
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Redundant is also defined as repetitive, so I'm clearly not getting the subtle distinction you're obviously making.

I did not quote this to cite a particularly egregious instance. Just a simple, amusing example. Or so I thought.

They could have done it differently, there probably were reasons why they did it. But they done did it, says I, pointing to the dead, bloody and thoroughly battered horse.

Which I now shall bury. Really. Honest. The end.
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But they done did it, says I,

That they damn well done did!


I'm clearly not getting the subtle distinction you're obviously making

It's not the first time one of my more subtle disinctions hasn't penetrated beyond my own awareness, nor will it be the last. You join fine company! ;-)


sheila
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I just came across this interesting repartee on this fascinating board! Think I will lurk here a while and learn some much needed word 'stuff'. I'll just sit here and watch. OK?

sa
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I just came across this interesting repartee on this fascinating board! Think I will lurk here a while and learn some much needed word 'stuff'. I'll just sit here and watch. OK?

Chure.

MOI
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No. of Recommendations: 0
I just came across this interesting repartee on this fascinating board! Think I will lurk here a while and learn some much needed word 'stuff'. I'll just sit here and watch. OK?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Chure.

MOI

sheila
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