Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Comment? No.

Not long ago, I criticized writers who report a "no comment" but then quote something that looks very much like a comment.

I saw the flip side of this issue the other day. The passage went something like this:

Harvey Baxter, chairman of Philosoph Enterprises, said last night, “I have no comment on this issue at the present time.”
Now, that is a "declined to comment." Don't waste your publication's paper and ink and your readers' time by printing such quotes.

2 comments:

Byf said...

And sometimes the reporter tries to save too much ink by saying, "He declined comment."

Doug Fisher said...

Why do we insist on using the silly "declined to" when "would not" is so much more natural?