California Appeals Judge Scolds Lawyers for Excess of Acronyms
Posted Sep 30, 2009 7:53 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss
A California appeals judge who scolded lawyers for using too many acronyms decided to set an example by avoiding them in 27 pages of his opinion.
Judge David Sills of the Fourth District Court of Appeal criticized the lawyers for “descending into an alphabet soup of jargon-based acronyms,” the Legal Pad blog reports. The Santa Ana judge is known for his lively opinions, and didn’t disappoint in the case involving organic compounds in paint and coatings.
Sills lodged his protest in a footnote. “Consider, for example, this sentence, committed on page 32 of the appellant’s opening brief: ‘In June 22, 2000, CARB adopted an SCM for AIM coatings.’ Huh?” Sills wrote.
Sills said a lower court judge had managed to avoid acronyms. “Judging by the briefing in the case before us now,” Sills wrote, “nobody got the hint. Unfortunately, there are no rehab clinics for acronym addicts.”
Sills wrote that his opinion was a “small protest against the further uglification of the English language.”