Exercise 12: Be nice: it costs nothing (p. 15)
Give three examples of the editor’s formal style. Explain their purpose and tone.
- The editor uses jargon to show their expertise relating to the legal issues surrounding swearing. They cite the Summary Offences Act (Section 17) which “incurs 10 penalty units or imprisonment…”. Such language gives the editor an air of authority and shows that they are well informed in a bid to build trust among their readership. The use of jargon therefore legitimises the editor’s views.
- The editor uses correct grammar and punctuation and uses sophisticated and proper expression.
- The editor also uses a variety of sentence structures including many compound and complex sentences.
- The editor refers to their newspaper The Daily to give the impression that their views are important and representative of an authoritative institution or group that defends public standards and the common good.
- The editor adopts an assertive, sensible and moralistic tone to appear knowledgeable and once again commend the government’s initiative to decent people.
2. What is the purpose of the comparison with other countries? What conclusions do they draw?
The editor suggests that the problem is widespread and that there are effective models and solutions in other countries. Cities such as London and Boston have introduced regulations that restrict the intrusive nature of mobile phones. The editor draws upon the comparison as well as the politician’s quote to show that there is a good case to introduce the restrictions in Australian cities and that it would have widespread support. The comparison with other states encourages commuters to be receptive to initiatives that protect their peace. This also impresses upon governments the need to take action.
(Explain the purpose of the editor’s principled stance)
The editor appeals to people’s moral standards and believes that it is important for people to show a sense of community. Accordingly they should behave decently and respectfully in public spaces.
The editor shames and excludes people who are indecent. They use evocative and dramatic language such as “potty mouthed” and depicts perpetrators as “coarse” and “vulgar” to show that they do not show respect for others and undermine civic duties.