"Ah, you must be very beautiful then." -- Belle De Jour, from first blog entry

TV My approach to the ITV channels lately has been similar to idiot motorists who slow down on one side of the M6 when a car crash has happened on the other -- I'll stop for a moments as I'm passing through the channels just to see how bad it is. Last night on my way to a rolling news channel, I stopped off at ITV2 who were showing the trailer for the adaptation of Belle de Jour's book and blog starring Billie Piper. Once I was over the shock of seeing Billie doing those things in that way (having led a sheltered existence I completely avoided her lad mag appearances pre-Doctor Who) and the fact that it does look fabulous and that I'll be tuning in, I began to listen to the voice over and the advertising which flashed across the screen.

Then the really horror as the announcers says and the words said 'Based on the blogs by Belle De Jour' (my emphasis). Like Belle herself, I could be less offended by the c-word (which I'm abbreviating in case any readers are) but one of my pet(ty) hates is the pluralizations of blog to blogs if there aren't more than one of them. Which in this case there clearly aren't. If there's an adaptation of single book, Pride and Prejudice, it doesn't become 'Based on the books by Jane Austen'.

What I suspect has happened here is that the promotional person doesn't know the difference between a blog and blog post or even really knows what a blog is and is using it in the same way that got a certain satirical office website in trouble with the very people it was supposed to attract when it simply put the words 'latests blogs' at the top of a list of latest blog entries thereby demonstrating that no matter how much they might think they're down with the kids, they really weren't. Wouldn't it have been easier to have said 'web diary' or 'weblog' instead of trying to use the 'cool' version and getting it so horrendously wrong and perpetuating the impression to some that what I've written in this space below the title and before the date is a blog and not the whole damn six years worth.


Anonymous said...

Jesus Christ, it's Jane AustEn.

And she wrote novels not just books.

Stuart Ian Burns said...

Posting late at night again...

But I did use 'book' on purpose since generally in marketing parlance, 'book' is preferred instead of 'novel'. See this page about Masterpiece Theatre:


Anonymous said...

No it isn't. Poems are published in books. Atlases are books. The Thomas Cook European Train Timetable is a book.

Jane Austen wrote novels which were published in book form. Dickens's intially serialised his novels in a magazine so all novels are not automatically books.

A book is an item distinct from the literary form it might contain.

To be even more pedantic, in academic circles whatever you're studying is referred to as a text.

Stuart Ian Burns said...

Yes, I know -- that's what I'm saying -- you're preaching to the choir Anonymous -- but tell that to the good people at ...


... which is wrong, wrong, wrong.

Again -- I used the phrase as part of the main argument about using the word 'blogs' incorrectly in that they would never pluralise 'book' even though that's wrong and they use it too.

I could of course have said 'based on the novel by Jane Austen' but that tends to have less currency amongst marketeers despite its correctness and I was trying and apparently failing to be a bit humorous.

Unless you're just winding me up. Whoever you are.

LaValle Linn said...

Stuart, by now you've found the calm. I'll join you there.