My dictionaries tell me that cop-out (an instance of avoiding a commitment or responsibility) is slang, but I have seen this compound word being used in our English newspaper and have also heard it used by someone on CNN.

Could you please tell me how the use of cop-out in formal English would sound to your native ears?

By the way, is it slang or just informal?




I see it as slang, used mainly in casual, spoken English.

Mr. Tom the use of cop-out in formal English

No, it is very informal. It is negative, disapproving.


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Thanks, Clive and AStar.

Could you please give me a better word/phrase as its substitute?

AStar, the link you gave me had this as an example sentence.

The film's ending is an unsatisfactory cop-out.

Which formal word or phase could I use here instead of cop-out?



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The film's ending is unsatisfactory.