Dictionary Corner: Review

Question: What would you surmise if you read the following statement?

"Virgin Mobile reviews Singapore strategy."

We looked in the dictionary to see what, in this context, "review" could mean. There are a number of options. "Look over" is one, "study" another. We quite liked "examine again." We warmed particularly to "examine with an eye to criticism or correction." Ah, yes, correction.

It all becomes clear from the text that follows:

"The Virgin Group and SingTel announce today their intention to stop selling mobile phone products and services in Singapore via their Virgin Mobile joint venture, following the shareholders’ recent review of its strategy in the light of weak economic and market conditions in the country." (See Virgin Reviews Singapore Plans.)

Yup. The business sucked so they closed it down. That's a pretty harsh review. To then blame the "difficult local retail trading circumstances" in the aftermath of September 11 prompted us to open up the dictionary again to look up the meaning of "cop-out."

— Ray Le Maistre, European Editor, Unstrung
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