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  1. #1
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    Default put a positive spin on

    China Seeks to Put Positive Spin On Talks With North Korea.

    What does "put a positive spin on" mean? I can't find it in the dictionary or anywhere.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: put a positive spin on

    To put a spin on something means to twist or turn the truth, either slightly or more. There's a negative aspect attached to twisting and turning the truth, so adding 'positive' to that idiom gives you, put a positive spin in it, or make sure the result of the spin (the untruth) is positive. For example,

    Max: Pat has to go to the dentist today.
    Sam: Is Pat scared?
    Max: Yes, so I'm not going to say anything.
    Sam: Put a positive spin on it. I know that dentist. She doesn't use needles. She uses gas, and she lets you watch MTV while she is working on you.

    Truth: The dentist can be a painful and scary experience.
    Positive Spin: There're pain management techniques.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: put a positive spin on

    "To spin" has come to mean, especially in political and diplomatic senses, to take some news and try to add one's own interpretation of that news to match their own message in an effort to promote or validate your own message to a wider audience.

    In marketing its called "repackaging."

    For example, if I supported the US' actions in Iraq, the spin I would put on GW Bush's reelection would be something like:
    "Americans put Bush in office for another four years because they understand the need for the US to be in Iraq and agree with his War on Terror."
    If I were opposed to the US' actions in Iraq I might put the following spin on his reelection:
    "Americans reelected Bush not because of his War on Terror but because they are, as a group, becoming more conservative and are worried about domestic social issues and maintaining 'family values' in the country."

    There is truth in both points of view, but the job of the spinner is to try to represent their interpretation as the most important one.

    So, "to put a positive spin on something" means to take a situation or event, usually one that initally would be negative for you, and try to "re-interpret" it so that it doesn't seem as bad to an outside observer.

    "China Seeks to Put Positive Spin on NK Talks" probably means that China actually is angry at NK but they are seeking to make the rest of the world feel that whatever their disagreement with NK is, is not important by talking about the situation in a positive way.

    Hope that helps.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: put a positive spin on

    Welcome.

    Future Note, we try not to do homework assignments for students, and you haven't, but if in doubt, ask the poster to provide their answers first. We are more than willing to help out as long as students make an effort to take responsibility for their work and their learning.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: put a positive spin on

    Dear Teachers,

    Can you recommend a idioms or phrasal verbs dictionary? I mainly use Longman Dictionary, but recently found some of its explanations are not correct and many idioms and phrasal verbs can't be found. I have looked at a couple of dictionaries, but I am afraid to get a dictionary containing too many rarely used idioms and phrasal verbs and end up wasting time on it.


    thanks!

    svforumer

  6. #6
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    Default Re: put a positive spin on

    Quote Originally Posted by svforumer
    Dear Teachers,

    Can you recommend a idioms or phrasal verbs dictionary? I mainly use Longman Dictionary, but recently found some of its explanations are not correct and many idioms and phrasal verbs can't be found. I have looked at a couple of dictionaries, but I am afraid to get a dictionary containing too many rarely used idioms and phrasal verbs and end up wasting time on it.


    thanks!

    svforumer
    There is a lot of information available through this forum and everybody will gladly answer questions provided you tried on your own first. Let us know. some of your research may be helpful for others. You may want to bookmark the "idioms section" for further use. PS: There is no such thing as time wasted on research.

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