Gobbledegookarama

CAMDEN Council would love to appear in The Guardian for eye-catching policies and trail-blazing initiatives. Like that time they got pages of print coverage in nationals for doling out Asbos to the managing directors of promotions companies who used messy fly-posting advertising. Long time ago now.

This weekend, the council had to make do – not with front page praise – but with a bit of look-what-the-silly-old-sticks-have-done-now poking in Simon Hoggart’s Saturday column on the website. It’s about the outrageous jargon used in a recent council report on the future of the borough’s libraries.  Departmental defragmentation. Huh?Widening of spans of control. Say what? Information plinths? Stop now.

Writer Ruth Gorb, weeks ago, was the first to file on this unreadable bluster in the New Journal.

The council’s web team were crowing about gaining a crystal mark recently. It effectively means they don’t put local authority guff-words on Camden’s website. It makes the site a clear read, easy to navigate. Well done. It’s just a shame the same dedication to clarity has not been adopted to all of the council’s paperwork reports and that what Camden planned changes to the library services was not made absolutely clear to its own staff and users from the start. It would have probably made the last few weeks easier for leisure chief Flick Rea, who has faced a stiff job convincing library regulars that the rise of machines and cuts to some jobs will pave the way for a brighter future suggested by her tongue-twisting civil servants.

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