It takes 70 muscles and half-a-billion brain cells to merely form the word ‘hello’. In a series of documentaries that recently aired on the BBC, Stephen Fry explores the origins, complexities, misuses and general peculiarities of languages from all over the world. The first episode was broadcast on the September 27 and the final one aired on Sunday October 23. 

Language has the amazing capacity of adapting and constantly changing in order to suit people’s needs to communicate and express themselves. Although there are about 7000 languages spoken around the globe, its uncanny how emotions like sadness, laughter and joy are expressed in a similar way in many languages.

Words are the foundation of marketing, without them we would literally have no way of telling our customers anything. In the PR industry we know precisely how nuances like context or intent can make or break a campaign depending on interpretation.

Technical PR is really just the precise use of words and pictures. The success of a campaign depends on the clarity and accuracy you apply to your message. Language should be an enabling tool for your reader, not a barrier in the buying process. So, we think Fry’s documentary is essential viewing. You can find the documentary on iPlayer here (providing you aren’t reading this in a year or so, after the BBC have take it down, of course.)

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