Is there a term for when you don't really answer a question, but it seems like it?

1 Answer

There are many terms - see below for some examples


The more I dug into this, the more I found. There are a number of terms that are out there that not only refer to not answering a question, but in how you do it.

I started thinking that non-answer was a good one - it refers to the obvious non-answering of a question, such as:

How are babies born? Storks.

And then I found this link and they have several good ideas on the subject.

Skirting the issue refers to not answering the main concern raised and rather answering a side-issue:

The community is concerned that my factory is polluting the water and turning it bright blue? Clearly I am concerned and will look into methods of mitigating the colour of the water. Next question!

Being evasive is another term - this one is much like skirting the issue but being more obvious:

Did I study for two hours like I was supposed to? I got my work done.

And there's others: deflection, ducking the question, pivoting, obfuscation, and more.