“One Dead in Fremont Officer Involved Shooting”
Officer involved? The wording pretends that the police officer was a prop on the scene or some uninvolved bystander, rather than a real person who did a real thing. Re-write it as, "Police officer shoots and kills someone in Fremont". Much more accurate, but you'd never see a press release like this because it correctly describes the police officer as the starring role rather than as a prop in a situation that just spontaneously happened around him.
Think about this style the next time you read some press release where a company is responding to being accused of bad behavior, you'll see it everywhere: Anything about the company's actions will passive and it will be hard to figure out whether anyone in the company actually did anything: "A situation occurred. Procedures were followed." Conversely, anything about the accuser will be active and impart agency: "She became uncooperative. He yelled and acted threatening." It's a deliberate rhetorical tool, and I'm grateful this article gave it a name and described it so clearly.
Stick around for the (genuine) statement from a police department at the end, and its translation.
Calling it an "officer-involved shooting" (should have a hyphen!) in an initial report restricts the scope to a just-the-facts-as-we-know-them-m'am style. Even from the headline I know: 1> where (Fremont), 2> Fatality, 3> cop was there. Hopefully the first paragraph tells me who shot whom and some macro facts.
But in an early article or "hot take" it's rarely clear if, for example, a cop used excessive force, or poorly pressured someone under stress so they took their own life; if there was legitimate responsibility etc. The passive voice here preserves the "innocent until proven guilty" position.
If the cop is later convicted of murder I would hope that a subsequent news article would be more definite ("officer XXX convicted of murder") or alternatively "Letter: distraught father wanted suicide to be a spectacle"
In fact this is why I am generally uninterested in "news" -- the amount of actual data in these early articles is usually quite small. If people are still talking about it a week later, perhaps it's worth learning about.
Nevertheless, "officer shoots X" is at least as factual and without spin (unless X is "victim" or some kind of loaded word).
OP wasn't about news articles, anyway. In this context, the use of OIS from a precinct press release (i.e., a document not from a neutral observer, but from a representative of one of the involved parties) looks like an attempt to pre-emptively disclaim even the possibility of responsibility, which may or may not exist in any particular case.
One of the most active sources of new terms is apparently layoffs. Consulting companies and CEOs try to one-up each other, perhaps unconsciously, who can come up with and then own the coolest new term.
Then it starts spreading. CEOs read the same magazines and blogs and then everyone is using the term. "Hmm, I kinda like how so and so used the term 'circling back' I'll start using it too, it just seems so fresh and cool. Everyone will be impressed". 
I always wonder how people end up writing in that style. Do they actually think like that, as in for an hour they switch to thinking in corporate-speak, and later switch back to thinking normally. Or do they think normally and then translate as they type so "fuck that guy blah blah" becomes "we reached out to the developer and told them we'll be letting them go".
Imagine the tragedy of a poor CEO stuck in corporate-speak mode, unable to plainly communicate with family or even order coffee, because nobody understands them or just thinks they are an asshole.
Jargon: special words or expressions that are used by a particular profession or group and are difficult for others to understand.
Buzzword: a word or phrase, often an item of jargon, that is fashionable at a particular time or in a particular context.
A lot of these "corporate-speak" terms that are easy to poke fun at are jargon created to describe very specific, nuanced ideas within a professional group - they make communication easier. Then maybe the popular ones get used more broadly as buzzwords, by people who don't really know what they're talking about, and then it becomes assumed that anyone using that term doesn't know what they're talking about -- a huge disservice to the original creators of the jargon term, who coined it because they needed a word or phrase for nuanced communication with each other.
In my old management consulting job, we used this kind of jargon all the time. We knew it was jargon, many (but not all) of us never spoke like that in our personal lives. But at work, it helped us be more effective communicators.
Low-hanging-fruit is an example - does anyone have a shorter way of describing the idea? Sometimes we called them "easy wins", but that's as jargon-y as anything else I've heard.
This is an interesting example of a euphemistic treadmill. Corporate-speak has to change because each cool new term (e.g. downsizing) eventually gets poisoned by what it actually describes.
For a dysphemistic treadmill: "bleeding edge" was originally satire about the pain of being "past the cutting edge", but it gets used sincerely to describe new projects and even advertise startups. At this point it's so unremarkable that Programming Sucks had to use "hemorrhaging edge" to get the same effect.
In general, i begin with "what i want to say" and then i generate the smoothest way to explain it in a sentence, without anything that someone could "grasp" on.
It tends to be enough. So i don't think i ever think in corporate speak. I just try to use my imagination.
>One of the most active sources of new terms is apparently layoffs. Consulting companies and CEOs try to one-up each other, perhaps unconsciously, who can come up with and then own the coolest new term.
(1) euphemisms for negative events like "layoffs"/"firings" into "downsizing", "rightsizing", "resource actions", etc. Same situation as using "unintended targets", "collateral damage", etc for civilian deaths in war.
>"Hmm, I kinda like how so and so used the term 'circling back' I'll start using it too, it just seems so fresh and cool.
(2) phrases of "social graces" such as "circling back", "reaching out", "touch base" instead of the blunt tonality of "I will call you", "I will notify you", "Be prepared for me to be back at your desk a little later for your answer", etc. It's fascinating that this language lubrication to not make other people not feel like they are at our beck & call has been happening forever. If it was 200 years ago, I suppose one person might hand a note written on a piece a paper to a servant, and then the servant then passes that paper to the target's servant, and finally the target's servant gives the paper to the target. It seems like reinvention of phrases like "circling back" are recreating this non-threatening version of "we will be communicating later".
I understand that people can be irritated with both examples. However, (1) is more about dishonesty and deflection where (2) is just human grooming and ego preservation.
No, it's use of the passive voice to more accurately communicate the outcome of a system designed so that nobody has responsibility.
Saying that using passive voice is dishonest and evasive is a special case of shooting the messenger.
They are thrust into a situation, fall back to training that says 'just follow the rules / orders'. In that frame of mind, they indeed had no choice. Had they taken any other action, they'd have gone against policy as a simple lowly employee. That is terrifying and thus not an option.
Shortened headlines are supposed to have words elided (so I'd read it as "[is being] paid"), and newsy stuff tends to be about now which means that "paid" as past tense doesn't make sense and it would say "pays" (like the main headline does) if she was the one paying. The sentence ordering (Melania first, Daily Mail last) is to put the thing people are most interested in at the beginning.
It's not a case of dishonesty, it's a case of forgetting that most people don't usually use words that way.
BBC does this constantly because their mobile news app uses such short headlines - they elide all the specifiers and half the verbs, to the point where what's left is word salad with a handful of key nouns. Annoyingly often, it's necessary to read a piece just to see what the headline meant in the first place.
Ironically, you said that in the passive voice, which hides the question of who designed the system that way.
It pretty clearly causes increased organizational fitness in the current social / regulatory / legal environment.
The solution is not increased punishment for customer-facing people, since that would just put them in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation.
Something along the lines of RICO or Sarbanes-Oxley might help, since it would give strong personal incentives to the people who actually have power to set procedures and organizational culture.
Something that has definitely hurt, is the demonization of (and organizational liability for) individual initiative and discretion.
There does seem to be something a bit odd in making both leadership personally liable for bad outcomes of following policy, and the organization liable for bad outcomes of not having a strict enough policy.
Life at the Bottom by Theodore Dalrymple https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1566635055
Eichman in Jerusalam by Hannah Arendt https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0143039881/
Many have their theories to explain the current reincarnation of nationalism, few are prepared to admit they don't know why.
Right now I think such explanations are unhelpful. In their haste to pretend to understand, I think many prevent themselves from reaching any kind of usable explanation at all. And the application of their pet world view is more a shield protecting them from new evidence than a useful tool to help them understand.
Maybe people would often be better off, just saying, I don't know, and keeping an open mind.
Aside from that, I like how this article throws some light on how language encodes power and systems.
If people can be aware of how that works, maybe they won't be so bound by a discussion that was framed deliberately to disempower them, to prevent criticism of itself, and to confine their possible responses, and even imagination of responses to those least effective.
I just don't think anything good can come from systematically disempowering people. The human spirit always pushes back. Oppression simply guarantees reaction and conflict. And ends up destroying whatever order that the oppression was meant to create.
Instead of crushing people into the shape you think is most desirable, I think things work better when you can inspire them and guide them to take on that shape, and discover the possibilities of that shape, themselves. Not tyranny, not anarchy, but some kind of enlightened leadership. I think the American Dream was a good attempt at this, but maybe it got depleted by over-emphasizing consumerism, and got knocked off balance by, possibly, spurious, conflicts that eroded its moral legitimacy, and resulted in the corrosive self-doubt that stagnated progress and undermined the Dream's appeal.
To reach for a theory, maybe this reincarnation of nationalism is about trying, somehow, to design a new Dream.
<this reincarnation of nationalism is about trying, somehow, to design a new Dream
American dream was defined by the media, to me. Nationalism was defined by my mother telling what it was like in 1941. I could not believe that men and women would actually sign up for war, as they did then. Everybidy did, she said.
From my ears of viEtnam and tent-cities and matches the last thing that was was nationalism.
So if this new theory of AD is elusive too, then perhaps nationalism-as-dream will be realized by a portion of the citizenship.
United Airlines' core concern is for the safety and security of our passengers. Mr. Dao, a passenger on a recent flight was politely asked to leave the flight after a safety-critical United employee had to board and take his place.
The safety and security of all our passengers is paramount at United. After repeated attempts to disembark, Mr. Dao became belligerent and eventually posed a safety risk for passengers and crew members, requiring the contact of the Aviation Police.
The police arrived and handled the situation according to C.R.C 1875.12. At least two non-physical attempts were made to diffuse the situation before a physical response was required. Acting in accordance with the law, officers used a reasonable and warranted amount of force to remove Mr. Dao from his seat, eliminating the safety risk he posed to United crew and other passengers, and also to himself.
We thank the officers and United crew for their quick attention to this matter, which likely prevented further safety and security problems from arising.
At United, we are committed to the safety and security of all passengers and crew.
Are gender norms really the root of all evil?
Power will corrupt in both patriarchies and matriarchies.
>As you will read, the situation was unfortunately compounded when one of the passengers was politely asked to deplane refused and it became necessary to contact Chicago Aviation Officers to help.
The email actually read, "one of the passengers -we- politely asked..."
But that's kind of the problem, isn't it? That the style indignantly defends itself as polite when it's really a big, "fuck you?"
What's the point of PR-speak if it inflames a situation it's meant to cool?
Passenger is used as the subject, rather than object in your quoted passage. To see it in active voice, change "one of the passengers was politely asked...", to "SOME_SUBJECT politely asked one of the passengers...".
I've oversimplified, since it could be argued as active by adding the word "who",
"one of the passengers who was politely asked to deplane refused..."
but even if that's the case, then the master dodge phrase "it became necessary" cut SOME_SUBJECT from the second part. Note that the passenger is not doing the contacting in
"...and it became necessary to contact Chicago Aviation Officers to help."
Here's the active voice version, for contrast:
"We needed to contact Chicago Aviation Officers to help because the passenger unfortunately compounded the situation by refusing to deplane after we politely asked him to do so."
Notice that in the original statement, all humans have been moved from subjects to objects, mere instruments of authoritative concepts like "the situation" and "[what is] necessary".
Communications like this are signals to professionals who speak the jargon. If you know wtf you are talking about, it's pretty easy to parse the nonsense and figure out what is actually going on.
If you're in the know about a topic that others aren't, it's easily to spot these things by looking at the editorial decisions. If there's a new smartphone, and in the 2 hour keynote address, there's no mention of battery life improvements... guess what? The battery sucks.