A man in Australia wants to ban two little words most people use every day

A new campaign by the Diversity Council of Australia is taking aim at what for most of us is an innocuous but useful part of our vocabulary - 'hey guys'.

The two minute video is designed to draw attention to language that betrays inherent assumptions and biases in the work place - such as calling a group of women 'girls', or using 'gay' when you really mean 'lame'.

But commentators in Australia and beyond are taking issue with the idea that maybe we should be trying to cut out our use of 'hey guys' as well in an ongoing effort to be more inclusive, arguing it's a harmless expression, even if it does technically refer just to one gender.

Diversity Council chief David Morrison told Australian media:

It's a proven fact that more diverse workforces create more diverse thinking and are more productive, more effective.

One way you can engender that kind of environment is to be careful about how you speak to other people, talking to them with respect and listening to their views with respect.

One problem with excising 'hey guys' from your vocabulary though is that there isn't really a decent alternative.

Hey team. Hey folks. Hey y'all.

But still: language is always evolving. So watch this space guys.

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