So THIS is why we should think before we speak.

So I think I completely underestimated the level of difficulty of this essay assignment–but also didn’t realize up until now how I’ve actually been “re-purposing” my writing and my words for quite some time now! Depending upon the person that I’m talking to, or the class I’m writing a paper for, or the social networking site that I’m posting on, I am constantly adjusting how I communicate to meet the expectations and perhaps the norms of that particular median. By virtue of the fact that facebook and twitter accommodate for witty, stupid hashtags, I’m more inclined to point out the embarrassing humor of a situation then I would be if I were commenting on a facebook status–granted the fact that only 30 subscribe to my tweets whereas 700 some “friends” choose (or not) to view my profile and social updates might also be a reason for this communication craziness. Regardless of these particularities, ┬ámy followers and friends will both understand #thatawkwardmoment I had entailed my computer, the inability to function the mute button, and Waka Flocka’s “No Hands” blasting through the law library’s reading room.

This paper presents the similar challenge of communicating an idea, or a message, or an argument, or an event, to a different audience then what I previously had. With a change in audience brings a change in literary style I must adopt so that the new audience will take away my main point–my theme–whether that it’s to turn off your music before putting your computer to sleep, or to reconsider the problematic assumption that universal human rights are inherently justifiable.

If the audience doesn’t understand what you’re saying because the jargon is too academic, or the musical reference went over their head, the you have NO PURPOSE and might as well stop writing.

One thought to “So THIS is why we should think before we speak.”

  1. It’s true that writers definitely have to take into account where their audience is coming from. But I wouldn’t be so quick to discount those moments where the audience doesn’t understand the writer. Sometimes those moments are really valuable, because when a reader doesn’t understand what an author is saying, that is where inspiration has a chance to show through. For example, if we as students understood everything in our textbooks (which textbook writers write with student audiences in mind) then we really wouldn’t be pressed to explore the subject matter deeper. That being said, of course I agree that the main point should be clear, no matter what audience is reading the text.

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