Consider this passage (Source):

Few question the propriety of the current haste on the part of manufacturers to bring out "new and improved" products at the prevalent rate. At one time, in the dim, distant past before the advent of television, it was the vogue for products to be advertised on the merits of their "tried and true" qualities. Few advertisers were impious enough to jettison any part of a product that had been accepted by the public. Year after year, the local grocer store owner would proffer the same box of cereal, the same house cleaner. The acceptance was of the time-tested product, and it appeared almost unconscionable for the manufacturer to change his merchandise.

Q1: I cannot figure out the process of advertisement in that era. Does it mean there were some semi-shopes whose job was to check quality of the products and their staff monitored a product over a fair amount of time. After that, store owners would obey the instructions and recommendations made by those semi-shopes which they were not necessarily sincere?

Q2: What does "The acceptance was of the time-tested product" mean? does one which was more tested, it has a better chance to be a successful product? If so, why the author didn't say:"The acceptance was for the time-tested product"

  • 5
    If English is not your native language, you may be unaware that this entire passage is an example of truly awful writing. It is pompous, ridiculous and verbose. See @eijen's answer for more information about the content. All the author is saying is that today advertisers tout "new and improved" products while in the old days people didn't like their preferred products to change. Jul 7, 2016 at 17:46
  • 1
    @MarkHubbard To add onto that: If you're confused by this passage, that's fine. It would confuse many native English speakers as well.
    – user27353
    Jul 8, 2016 at 7:30
  • Awful is relative. I've seen writing far worse than this. It's flatulent, true, but coherent. I don't find it at all confusing.
    – TimR
    Jul 8, 2016 at 13:09

1 Answer 1


These questions both stem from, I believe, you not knowing what time-tested means. Time-tested means "done or used for a long time and proved to be effective" (Merriam-Webster). The implication of the word is the users have used the product over time and retained it because it proves effective.

Q1: The process of advertisement is this: People use a product for a long time and it proves effective, so instead of wanting to buy anything new, they want to buy the same thing they're already using. So the advertisers advertise it as "tried and true" (an idiom with meaning similar to "time-tested") to attract customers to buy the product.

Q2: Acceptance of something is far more common than acceptance for something according to the GloWbE corpus.

  • Thank for the answer, but the bottle was that I was not able to figure out how advertisers could influence on the customers as matter of the fact that there was no TV as well as, similar what you say, people choose a product after they tested it for a while.
    – Cardinal
    Jul 7, 2016 at 17:46
  • @MarkHubbard Thank you for the suggestion, I am not a native speaker.
    – Cardinal
    Jul 7, 2016 at 17:47
  • @eijen: Thanks awfully for the link to the GloWbE corpus site. I wish I'd known about it earlier.
    – Victor B.
    Jul 7, 2016 at 20:23
  • Why should advertisers encourage products which are already very popular? I mean, people would buy the products as matter of the fact they had used it for a long time and they had an inclination towards those products. I thought, the passage says, advertisers promote low quality products.
    – Cardinal
    Jul 8, 2016 at 9:03
  • @Cardinal: What made a product desirable before television was its reliability; it was just what you liked and would remain so; after television, reliability was supplanted by improvements made to the product's previous incarnation. "new and improved" is a TV-age advertising buzz-phrase. Sameness versus novelty.
    – TimR
    Jul 8, 2016 at 13:15

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