Redundant phrasing, also known as a “dog puppy,” weakens wording.

In one of those clinical trial advertisements this week, I came across this question:

Do you have sore or bleeding gums, type 2 diabetes and are you at least 35 years of age or older?

It is always a good idea to read back over something you have written and look for what I like to call "dog puppies." (That is, if you tell me you have a puppy, I can assume it is a dog unless you have an unusual baby pet.)

In this question, it is not necessary to say both AT LEAST 35 YEARS OF AGE and 35 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER? One or the other will do.

I would also suggest making this two separate questions for more impact.  I think it should read this way:

Do you have sore or bleeding gums, type 2 diabetes? Are you at least 35 years of age?

 

NOTE: Apparently no one among my readers was brave enough to take on the 54-word sentence in my July 11 post, so I will offer my best edit in the next post.

I'd love to hear from any of you who have great examples of "dog puppies" to share.


Tags:

2 Responses to “Redundant phrasing, also known as a “dog puppy,” weakens wording.”

  1. Ziggy says:

    This forum needed shaikng up and you’ve just done that. Great post!

  2. Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this site. It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between usability and visual appearance. I must say you have done a excellent job with this. Additionally, the blog loads extremely fast for me on Safari. Superb Blog!

Leave a Reply