grey area


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Wikipedia.

grey area

A concept or topic that is not clearly defined or that exists somewhere between two extreme positions. Primarily heard in Australia. There's a large grey area regarding whether the use of the new surveillance technology is lawful.
See also: area, grey

(a) gray area

Fig. an area of a subject or question that is difficult to put into a particular category because it is not clearly defined and may have connections or associations with more than one category. The responsibility for social studies in the college is a gray area. Several departments are involved. Publicity is a gray area in that firm. It is shared between the marketing and design divisions.
See also: area, gray

gray area

Indeterminate territory, undefined position, neither here nor there. For example, There's a large gray area between what is legal and what is not. This term, which uses gray in the sense of "neither black nor white" (or halfway between the two), dates only from the mid-1900s.
See also: area, gray

a grey area

COMMON If you call something a grey area, you mean that it is unclear. Note: `Grey' is usually spelled `gray' in American English. There are many grey areas in the law affecting stolen animals. Tabloid papers paint all sportsmen as heroes or villains. There is no grey area in between.
See also: area, grey

a grey area

an ill-defined situation or field not readily conforming to a category or to an existing set of rules.
In the 1960s, grey areas in British planning vocabulary referred to places that were not in as desperate a state as slums but which were in decline and in need of rebuilding.
2001 Rough Guide to Travel Health In theory, it should be a cinch to diagnose appendicitis, but in practice it's much more of a grey area.
See also: area, grey

a ˌgrey ˈarea

an area of a subject or situation that is not clear or does not fit into a particular group and is therefore difficult to define or deal with: The question of police evidence in cases like this is a grey area. We will need to consult our lawyers about it.
See also: area, grey
References in periodicals archive ?
Moving the point I in the square, they will notice that the sum of the grey areas and the sum of the white areas do not change and are always identical to each other.
I am a big fan of the DRS but this leaves a little bit of a grey area which can come back and bite the umpires," he added.
"But if this grey area is a factor in the development of malignant ailments, the money that will be spent on treating the cancers would be much more than what will be needed to move the pylons," said Adamou.
Somewhere in the grey area where pub rock meets new wave, the land inhabited by Dire Straits, Squeeze, Joe Jackson and Nick Lowe (and, perhaps, presided over by the king himself Elvis Costello) lives a man called Graham Parker.
"It is a grey area about who has the duty of care for employees."
Secrets Of The Palace (Saturday, C4, 6.30pm)HISTORIAN Justin Champion sets out to find the extent of the Queen's fortune, including her private investments - described as ``the best kept secret in the country, there are no leaks'' - and the grey area of what is public and what is private.
This is a grey area so contact me if you have any more problems.
"I think this case has shown that the law is a grey area. It is rather like the offside law.
The Commission for Racial Equality said: "Some people might find it offensive some people might not - it's a grey area."
It is yet another grey area in the rulebook and maybe when Nicky Brennan is restructuring the rules on suspensions he will give this one a little attention as well.
Writer Stephen Volk says: "I have always been interested in the grey area between psychology and the supernatural and today, with real-life mediums appearing on Living TV, it feels like the right time to make this drama." Scary stuff.
Insp David Johnston of Central Scotland Police admitted: "The problem is electric scooters are a bit of a grey area in the Highway Code."
She said: "I appreciate it may appear to be a grey area, but we feel the decision was right."
A Commons official said opposition ministers were not usually privy to secret information, but added: "It's a grey area and open to interpretation."
The Anfield No.2 believes there is a grey area in the laws of the game which needs to be clarified before Hamann can be condemned.