Today’s Word I’m Tired Of: “Interactive”

From time to time on this blog, I vent about words that I’m getting sick of hearing.  They’re usually words that are either wildly overused or have lost their original meaning.  “Authentic” is a good example.  “Sustainable” is another.  Today’s word is: INTERACTIVE.  Let’s get this straight.  Interactive means exactly that – “interactive.”  It means the user interacts with the content, program, app, or event.  It doesn’t mean cool or contemporary.  It doesn’t mean “hip.”  So let’s stop calling our contemporary church services “interactive,” our new book “interactive,” or our new business proposal “interactive.”

Unless of course it actually is, but truthfully, most won’t be.  If it isn’t interactive, then stop calling it that.

Two questions:

1)  Where have you seen the word “interactive” used when it shouldn’t be?

2)  Any other words we need to add to the list?


Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Kristen Collier

    So right, Phil! So tired of those words, too! And I’m excited for all the people who’ll be inspired by your new book! For though I know my mission in life–to love and serve my hubby, son and God–there are so many who will be placed back on the right path by your book.

    • Phil Cooke

      Thanks Kristen, and thanks for sharing about the book…

  • Daniel King

    Phil, one of the things I love about your blog is how interactive it is. :)

    • Phil Cooke

      Thank you Daniel… :-)

  • Amy Smith

    So true! I think in church circles at least, “modern” and “relevant” are joining the ranks of overused words that are losing their meanings. In all markets, “intuitive” may be on the brink as well. Everything these days is “interactive” and “intuitive.” These words just don’t make you sit up and take notice like they used to.

  • Rick Wilson

    I understand the challenge of words that get tired -used beyond their shelf life. The bigger challenge here is the CULTURE of interactivity which the overwhelming majority of church and faith based leadership does not understand. I recently attended a leadership conference (where I met you Phil) – no WIFI, no hash tag and no FB presence. Can this be happening in the 21st century??? Sure let’s stop using the word – let’s start doing it!!

    • Phil Cooke

      I sometimes refer to Media Conferences as conferences where the media doesn’t work…

  • P. Freeman

    I really don’t know if this counts but I think that the motto “Experience the Difference” needs to be retired!

    • Phil Cooke

      We should come up with a list of tired taglines as well. Good idea…