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I am at a conference, and the speaker said that his boss detests the word stakeholders; yet they couldn't come up with anything better. I have to admit, I am rather sick of that word too. Is there a better word?

[Context: A licensing board has a number of groups they are responsible to, such as the licentiates (I've always used licensees before, but having heard this word, I like it), educators, and the public; these groups are their stakeholders.]
 
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As a descriptor for those who hold a stake or interest in something, the word seems fine to me. What is it that you and the speaker object to - other than the word's ubiquity?


Richard English
 
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I wasn't sure. I will admit that in my field I come across it all the time and am getting a little sick of it. You know how words go. Suddenly the become really popular, and this is one of them.
 
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Constituencies?

WM
 
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Maybe. That's not a bad idea. I always think of politics when I hear it, but there's no reason I should.
 
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The non-political meaning of constituencies is only the third meaning. I used to hear it used by our fund-raisers when they referred to all of the various groups of people they were "cultivating" in order to separate them from their money! "Stakeholders" is probably more appropriate, but it is so pompous and I think I'm pretty tired of it too. Yet "all interested parties" doesn't sound nearly as important!

Wordmatic
 
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The word that most bothers me is "homeland", when referring to the United States in (mostly) terrorism stories. I always get the impression of Hitler (Fatherland) and Stalin (Motherland) when I hear the word. And the naming of encampments in Iraq and Afghanistan as Camp Liberty and Camp Freedom bring up connotations of Chinese Communist slogans.


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I have to agree about "homeland." I hardly know what they mean. What if you live in England, for example? They must translate it as England.
 
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homeland ... fatherland ... motherland ...

Yeah, funny how words get imbued with pejorative connotations. Isn't eschewing words like this usually called political correctness? I suppose it isn't when it's not some Other doing the protesting. For the record, German has Heimat 'home; native country' as well as Vaterland, both of which words predated Hitler. The Romans used to call their emperor pater patriae 'father of his country'. Hebrew has a similar construction ארץ םולדת ('erets moledeth) 'native land', literally 'country of birth'.

[Fixed formatting error.]

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I'm puzzled by the expression, "Native American." Amerigo Vespucci was far in the future when the aboriginal people of these two continents got here, so the term seems nonsensical.


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quote:
Originally posted by Geoff:
I'm puzzled by the expression, "Native American." Amerigo Vespucci was far in the future when the aboriginal people of these two continents got here, so the term seems nonsensical.


It's about as nonsensical as the term "European", since Europeans lived in Europe long before the Greeks came up with the term.
 
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... And Europa herself never actually existed.


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quote:
homeland ... fatherland ... motherland ...

My uncle, who was a sergeant in Patton's army during WWII, once told me that the Germans fought for the Fatherland, the Russians for the Motherland, and the Americans for the hell of it and souvenirs.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by goofy:


It's about as nonsensical as the term "European", since Europeans lived in Europe long before the Greeks came up with the term.

Granted, but "European" aorse from within that continent; "Native American" was declared by outsiders such as most of us. Given the origins of Europa in Greek mythology, wouldn't follow that the indigenous peoples of The Americas would be identified by their mythology?


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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quote:
My uncle, who was a sergeant in Patton's army during WWII, once told me that the Germans fought for the Fatherland, the Russians for the Motherland, and the Americans for the hell of it and souvenirs


According to one Californian I once corresponded with, America fought in WW1 and WW2 "to save Europe's ass".

But then he was a Dudweiser drinker...


Richard English
 
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Given the origins of Europa in Greek mythology, wouldn't follow that the indigenous peoples of The Americas would be identified by their mythology?

That works for what individual tribes called themselves and their known neighbors. For example, just north of where I sit typing there was a tribe who are called in English the (Coast) Miwok. They called themselves just plain Miwuk. In Wisconsin and Illinois there is a tribe that used to be called the Winnebago in English. They prefer their own ethnonym, the Ho-Chunk. The former name was given to them by neighboring Native American tribes and "has been variously translated as, "people of the stinking water," "people of the big voice," "people of the stagnant water'" and "people of the smelly waters."" (link) There were many hundreds more tribes in North America.

What did they call North America? Did they even have a concept of North America? Should we use hundreds of different names from hundreds of languages? For better or worse, we "took" this land by force from its first inhabitants (I have always liked the Canadian term for their indigenous people, First Nations), and we are not giving it back soon. For better or worse, most Native Americans now speak English as their only language. If we settled on one term (translated into English of course, most Native Americans would be called People and this country Land. Works for me, but the Europeans (who migrated to Europe from elsewhere) might not be amused.

America fought in WW1 and WW2 "to save Europe's ass".

Funny. I am sure each country has its rationalizations for why they fought in the War to End All Wars and its bigger sequel that followed it in a little over two decades. The Germans, during the latter, said they were fighting to stop the spread of Bolshevism into Europe from Asia. I cannot remember why the Vichy French were fighting after their armistice with Germany. The Brits had their reasons. The real reasons were, no doubt, more complicated than can be expressed in a single, short phrase or sentence.

[Fixed some typos.]

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Bob, the linked article gives rise to the thought that all who are impacted by a company's actions, whether as ones making proffit from it, ones purchasing its goods or services, or those downstream from its effluent are all "stakeholders."

Z, I'll start using First Nations. Makes sense to me! It's too bad the "Winnebago" didn't operate in Milwaukie. It would give great credence to RE's assessment of US beer. Wink

Now, how come the Miami lived in Ohio, but their name's in Florida? Confused


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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Now, how come the Miami lived in Ohio, but their name's in Florida?

It's a coincident. The city in Florida is named after the Miami river, which is spelled in its first citation as Mayaimi. (Actually it refers to Lake Okeechobee that was called "Lake of Mayaimi, which is called Mayaimi because it is very large".) The tribe in Ohio called themselves Myaamia (plural Myaamiaki) 'downstream people’.


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And there's the Cree and the Creek Indians, who disliked being confused with one another. I have a lim at OEDILF about it.

In Canada, far from the sea,
Live an Indian tribe called the Cree.
If you call one a Creek,
He will grimace and speak,
Saying, "If you see 'k', that's not me."


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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ROFLMAO!!!


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quote:
It would give great credence to RE's assessment of US beer.

Not all of it. The USA has made some wonderful strides in the past 30 years and now brews some of the world's finest beers. Sadly around 96% of the USA's beers are still rubbish.


Richard English
 
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Sadly around 96% of the USA's beers are still rubbish.

quote:
"Ninety percent of everything is crud." ([url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sturgeon's_law]link[/url]).

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quote:
]"Ninety percent of everything is crud."

Probably because it's made in China.


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Certainly I have never drunk any good Chinese beer.


Richard English
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Richard English:
Certainly I have never drunk any good Chinese beer.


My hotel in North Korea had a palatable beer, not a proper real ale but a palatable dark beer nevertheless.
The beer in China is very similar to the beers in dozens of other countries, not something I'd choose but not something I'd refuse.
 
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The beer in China is very similar to the beers in dozens of other countries, not something I'd choose but not something I'd refuse

I suppose it depends on what you mean by "good". To my mind, anything that I'd not choose to have but would put up with isn't good; at best it's acceptable.


Richard English
 
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Interesting thread. Should be illustrated with a sketch: wordcrafters toasting each other at a Chinese brewery, cartoon to be captioned "Mistakeholders"
 
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quote:
quote:
]"Ninety percent of everything is crud."

Probably because it's made in China.

My comment was not meant to center solely on mentally-disruptive beverages.


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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Bob, thanks for that link from Language Log. I enjoyed reading about the evolution of stakeholders
quote:
The word stakeholder was used to stand in contrast to the neoclassical view of the firm as catering to stockholders. Freeman used the term stakeholder analysis to remind management that it was in the long-term interests of the company to pay attention to the interests of those who have an impact on or are impacted by the activities of the company.
I see (from another part of that link) that my colleague isn't the only who is getting sick of that word.

I don't want this to deteriorate into yet another beer thread, but, Richard, I think you respect my beer taste. That's just not true that 96% of U.S. beers is rubbish. Now, you've had your beer say, and I've had mine. Back to "stakeholders." [Feel free to PM me about U.S. beer, though.]
 
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P.S.

I just checked the OED about that stakeholder account from Language Log, and it doesn't mention it (in the online version, at least). It says the word comes from 1708 and means "An independent person or organization with whom money is deposited, esp. when a number of people make a bet or other financial transaction."

Then in 1821 it evolved to "A person, company, etc., with a concern or (esp. financial) interest in ensuring the success of an organization, business, system, etc.' That seems more like we use it today, though not with the "especially financial' aspect."

Then from 1994-6, it has this definition, which seems to be more British: "stakeholder economy orig. Brit. Polit., an economy regarded or conceived of as giving all members of society a stake in its success. stakeholder pension Brit. Finance, a government-regulated, low-cost private pension plan, intended for those without access to an occupational pension or higher-cost personal pensions."

Yet Language Log called it a 25-year-old piece of management-speak that was "introduced" in a seminal book by R. Edward Freeman. I guess the use in management is what's 25 years old.
 
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quote:
I don't want this to deteriorate into yet another beer thread, but, Richard, I think you respect my beer taste. That's just not true that 96% of U.S. beers is rubbish.

Just to make it clear that this comment wasn't just an emotive, anti-American slur, my figure of 96% is (or was last year when I last checked) a true one. Less than 4% of US beers are made by craft breweries. 96% of US beer consumption is of the products of the big breweries - none of whom produce decent beer.


Richard English
 
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quote:
none of whom produce decent beer.

That's either misguided opinion and/or xenophobic.


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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quote:
That's either misguided opinion and/or xenophobic.

Even if we don't go that far, it is just opinion, not a statement of fact. The use of words such as 'decent' or 'good' to describe beer can only ever be personal opinion. While Richard uses a fairly narrow definition of what constitutes such beers, many others will, with justification, disagree.

As Kalleh says, this thread has no connection with beer, so please do not make any further posts on this subject.


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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Off-topic post removed.

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Richard English
 
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Arnie,

The post was not off-topic (or about beer) - it was about the suggestion that I am being xenophobic.

Please do not abuse your position as administrator to delete my posts. This would not be the first board I have left because of this kind of bullying.


Richard English
 
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quote:
Originally posted by zmježd:
Now, how come the Miami lived in Ohio, but their name's in Florida?

It's a coincident. The city in Florida is named after the Miami river, which is spelled in its first citation as Mayaimi. (Actually it refers to Lake Okeechobee that was called "Lake of Mayaimi, which is called Mayaimi because it is very large".) The tribe in Ohio called themselves Myaamia (plural Myaamiaki) 'downstream people’.


There is a Miami valley in Ohio, and both a Miami River and a Little Miami River, all named for an Algonquin tribe, the Miami Indians.

Wordmatic (returning very late to this conversation)
 
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There's also a Miami River in Oregon. Wikipedia has a list of Miamis.
 
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Oh, yes, Tinman, I'd quite forgotten that little creek.

Kalleh, kill me if you will, but another bit about Chinese beer: Watch the movie, "Red Sorghum" for a funny bit about their beer, made a propos this thread because a stakeholder in the beer company caused it. Whew! Brought it back on topic! Razz


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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Don't forget to honor one of the most important people in the current spate of vampire movies: the stake holder.


Give a man a fish and he can eat for one day; give a man a fishing pole and he will find an excuse to never work again.
Nollidj is power.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoff:
quote:
Originally posted by goofy:


It's about as nonsensical as the term "European", since Europeans lived in Europe long before the Greeks came up with the term.

Granted, but "European" aorse from within that continent; "Native American" was declared by outsiders such as most of us. Given the origins of Europa in Greek mythology, wouldn't follow that the indigenous peoples of The Americas would be identified by their mythology?

One such term they use is "original people", an apt descriptor--unless there were other hominids here before they crossed the land bridge.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Proofreader:
And there's the Cree and the Creek Indians, who disliked being confused with one another. I have a lim at OEDILF about it.

In Canada, far from the sea,
Live an Indian tribe called the Cree.
If you call one a Creek,
He will grimace and speak,
Saying, "If you see 'k', that's not me."

The U-C-K I got. What was that first letter again?
 
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