just the facts, ma'am

just the facts, ma'am

Only state exactly what happened, without embellishment or exaggeration. The phrase is often attributed to the character Sergeant Joe Friday from the 1950s TV show Dragnet. Despite popular misconceptions, Friday never said this exact phrase. All right, whoa, just the facts, ma'am—when did you start hearing the strange noise? A: "He's a two-timing fool!" B: "All right, just the facts, ma'am. What caused your dispute?"
See also: just

Just the facts, Ma'am

Don't embellish your story. Many expressions moved from a movie or television program to popular speech, but none more quickly than a misquotation (as it turns out) of a lines by Sergeant Joe Friday, played by Jack Webb on the 1950s TV series Dragnet. With his deadpan expression and staccato speech, Friday enthralled the public; Dragnet was one of the highest-rated drama series of the decade. At least once in every show, viewers heard Friday tell a female witness, “Just the facts, Ma'am.” Except they didn't. He might have said, “Give us the facts, ma'am,” but he never uttered the four-word phrase. No matter, because the phrase swept the country in a wide range of contexts. If you wanted to be thought of (if only by yourself) as clever, you interjected “Just the facts, Ma'am” delivered in a Friday voice in a question or request. Oh well, Humphrey Bogart's character Rick in the movie Casablanca never said “Play it again, Sam” either.
See also: just
References in periodicals archive ?
One can almost hear him saying, Joe Friday style, "Just the facts, ma'am."
So, if a company offers the test directly to the consumer, and reports it out with a "Just the facts, Ma'am" positive or negative result, is the consumer responsible for any misinterpretation, or has the laboratory company deceptively marketed a defective, imperfect product?
The snarky mien cultivated by most of the digital new leaders poses perhaps the biggest challenge to traditional journalists trained in "just the facts, ma'am" writing.
Just the facts, ma'am. To remove emotion, focus on the results and let the numbers speak for themselves.
And once we realize this, the just the facts, ma'am approach no longer bolsters credibility, because all we can think of is other facts that we may not have been told, and other investigations that didn't get written about, and other clients whose names will forever remain unmentioned.
One part true-story crime drama and one part fraud reference book, Pedneault's book takes the reader through an entire fraud investigation, following the same principles as the old television show Dragnet: just the facts, ma'am, with names changed to protect the innocent and the guilty.
Joe Friday of "Dragnet" fame used to say on the popular police TV show: "Just the facts, ma'am."
With his "just the facts, Ma'am" approach, Trimble is able to provide a clear, cogent telling of the remarkable story of how air power came to the U.S.
"Just the facts, ma'am. Just the facts," Sergeant Joe Friday famously said in the TV series Dragnet.
Just the Facts, Ma'am * Offshore PWC racers withstand countless hours of training to develop their skills.
Joe Friday, became synonymous with the line, "Just the facts, ma'am." Medical mysteries may rival cop shows nowadays as settings for TV dramas.
Perhaps that's why we Americans gravitate toward the sting of "just the facts, ma'am" truth-tellers during the most difficult periods in history--Jimmy Carter after Watergate, FDR in the Great Depression, and Honest Abe during the Civil War--rather than sticking with the mind-numbing lull from politicians who'd rather tell us what they think we want to hear.
I found the text informative rather than inspiring--more of a "just the facts, ma'am" style than engaging prose in the Sue French or Steve O'Meara vein.
A "just the facts, Ma'am" approach, rather than an expletive-strewn flame, can be a more effective in getting yourself taken seriously and in getting the results you want.