The future is 140 characters


Hannover, the largest convention ground in the world, and us. It might seem like an unexpected match. But last week we were there, talking at ConventionCamp, the internet conference (or die Internet-Konferenz if you’re German). We were the only people doing a talk in English. And ours, unsurprisingly, was about words.

In a huge building that seemed more likely to be the setting of a science fiction film than a business conference, we talked about the future of language. These were our top three tips:

Twitter can make you a better writer

Despite what Ralph Fiennes says, condensing your thoughts into 140 characters will make you write more concisely, help you say what you mean and stop you waffling.

Keep things short and simple

Make what you write as tight as you can. Too much fluff, too much formality and too many words will put your reader off.

Grab attention, then hold on to it

We read things on a screen differently to how we read things on paper. We skim read. So cut out anything that someone could scan. Save only the most important information. Nobody likes scrolling. Tschüss.

 


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on Nov 15, 2011

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