NBC Evening News for Tuesday, Feb 28, 1978
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(Studio) President Carter's promise to improve language in government documents and example of government document language reported.
REPORTER: David Brinkley
(DC) Report on language used by government in rules, regulations, etc. and seminars sponsored by "Federal Register" to educate bureaucrats on writing regulations so people can understand them. [WOMAN - reads government regulation with regard to destruction of vegetation on government property.] [MAN - reads sample of rewritten regulation.] President Carter's promise, in speech on February 2, 1977, for fewer government regulations and simpler language in them reported Film shown. [CARTER - makes promise.] Is noted this proposal not finalized. ["Fed Register" spokesperson Fred EMERY - cites proposed Federal Communications Commission rules on CB radio requirements as only document of any size where agency made effort to communicate with people.] Quotes given from document mentioned by Emery, both before and after simplification. Civil Aeronautics Board chairperson Alfred Kahn's order to employees with regard to plain talk noted. [KAHN - cites reaction to order from newspaper column in "Boston (Massachusetts) Globe" and from editorial in Singapore.] Also mentioned in report are Office of Education and OSHA. Reaction to all of this by world-renowned semanticist, Senator S.I. Hayakawa, noted. [HAYAKAWA - sees little hope for changing government language; cites reasons.]
REPORTER: Edwin Newman