We've all seen the word countless times in executive and celebrity quotes in both press releases and published articles. And every time we've seen the word, we've recognized it for what it is: an obfuscation.
New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez used the word to describe his feelings about the arrival of his new backup, the media savvy Tim Tebow, in an April 20 New York Post article: "He's been as advertised, as good of a guy, if not better, than anybody said...I'm thrilled to work with him."
The word that makes us all cringe when we see it used in quotes: "thrilled."
Either the Jets' handlers got lazy and supplied Sanchez (or the Post) with a boilerplate quote, or Sanchez himself is sending out a coded message that he wants to be traded—now. No one buys "thrilled" in a quote, yet we see it all the time. It betrays lack of imagination and conveys mendacity.
If you're a PR pro, strike it from your lexicon, unless your executive is describing a ride on the Coney Island Cyclone.
Follow Steve Goldstein: @SGoldsteinAI